When I won a large sum of money when playing the lottery a few years ago, I decided to invest some of it in real estate. My dad used to always tell me that bricks and mortar where a great way of protecting a large sum of money. Unfortunately, my father wasn't a real estate expert so his advice did not go beyond this very simple statement. I didn't know what to do for the best so I contacted a real estate agency. They were really great and they helped me to plan my property investments wisely. I started this blog so I could offer advice to others.
Purchasing a house is the largest financial transaction most people ever make. More importantly, a good home is part of the recipe for personal happiness. That's why it's important to do the necessary preparations before making the purchase decision. Here are seven valuable house-buying tips.
Make a list of essential requirements. First, decide what you want and need in a house (keeping in that what you want and what you need may or may not be the same thing). This includes the type of accommodation (detached, semi-detached, condo, townhouse), size (most importantly, the number of bedrooms and the number of bathrooms), location, and appliances. Finally, note your maximum price.
Find or create a spreadsheet showing your requirements. You may be able to find a checklist online showing your wants/needs. If not, create a spreadsheet with columns for each requirement noted above. This will enable you to easily take notes when you view each house and then compare the notes later.
Don't be shy when visiting a house! Viewing a house that you might buy is not like touring a museum. Be active, and thoroughly check everything to ensure that the electrical and other systems work. Turn all the lights on and off, flush the toilets and turn the taps on and off, and put each of the appliances through a cycle. Winter or summer, request that the heating/cooling systems be turned on to review their operation.
Calculate travel times. In addition to determining the commuting time to your place of work, it's a good idea to check the travel times to other important locations- your child's school, your place of worship, grocery stores, the gym and anywhere else you go regularly.
Check out the front and back yards and the garage. Are the yards large enough for your purposes? What is the condition of the turf, and is the landscaping attractive? Are the fences sturdy? Is the porch and/or deck in good condition? Is the garage large enough for your vehicle(s)?
Assess the neighbours and the neighbourhood. You don't live entirely on your own property—you also live in a neighbourhood. Is the neighbourhood safe? If you have children, are there places for them to play, and can they walk to school? Are your next-door neighbours friendly? Is there easy access to public transit? You should visit or drive by the house at different times of the day and evening to check noise levels and street activity.
Check out the non-mortgage expenses. In addition to your mortgage payments, you need to calculate other regular expenses. You might be responsible for maintenance fees (for a condo) or expected maintenance costs, utility expenses, property taxes, and other possible fees (such as for garbage removal).
After you've reviewed all these items for each house and studied your notes, you should be ready to move forward with confidence. The homework that you've done will be a solid foundation for the next steps: getting a house inspection, arranging financing, and making an offer on properties for sale.Share
23 October 2017