Everyone needs a little bit of friendly advice from time to time, and that’s especially true when dealing with real estate. It’s a tough world out there for a buyer. It’s doubly tough in a market like the one we have had over the past several years. So here are a few buyer-oriented real estate tips that may help you as you approach this market. The goal of these tips is simply to provide current and helpful items to consider so you can make the best possible buying decisions.
First, when you decide it is time to purchase a home, start by making a list of what you are looking for with your real estate purchase and stick to it. Put your most important items on the top of the list and work down in order of what is less important. Decide on what would be deal breakers from the start, and you won’t be confused and unsatisfied later.
Be sure to keep all aspects of the home you are thinking about purchasing in mind. While the physical aspects … size of rooms, the kitchen and so on are important factors, avoid focusing solely on a few things. Other considerations such as traffic patterns, distance from work, noise levels, do you feel safe, the quality of the neighborhood, have you met the neighbors? These and other issues hugely impact your experience once you are living in the home.
Buying a home with a great view might be what you are looking for, but remember it may have disadvantages, too. Usually, it costs significantly more than the rest of the houses in the neighborhood. Its resale value can also be negatively affected, as the potential buyers might not appreciate the view as much as the original buyer did. There is also a good possibility that over time new structures will be erected, significantly altering the original panoramic view; be sure you know what is going to happen to the land … and views you are looking … at in the future. So, yes, having a great view may be nice, but do your due diligence and always try to pay as little extra as possible for the view.
For those of you real estate investors or first-time hom owners seeking to purchase properties at courthouse auctions, it is always wise to conduct a thorough title review before bidding. In this way, successful buyers avoid getting stuck with a house that remains subject to unpaid taxes, contractor’s liens or other mortgage obligations that were not cleared up. Don’t take it for granted that these issues were all eliminated at the foreclosure; check for yourself and be certain that you will not have clouds on the title. This could be a costly problem.
As an investor, you must look past the cosmetic aspects of the house you are looking to purchase. If the walls are dingy, it only takes a few dollars to buy a can of paint and freshen up the look. Conversely, the previous owner may have covered up the ills of the past with that same few dollars of paint. Look at location and major repairs and do not overlook the small things, as small things can become big things fast. Do an in-depth inspection, bring a contractor with you when you are looking at a home you may be interested in bidding on. Be sure you have a good estimate of what the repair and improvement costs are going to be and what the market value after repairs (ARV) will be. The ARV is important to know, you do not want to be overpriced for the market area, or if you plan to flip the home, if there is enough profit potential in the deal.