Whether you are looking for a first home, investment property, or purchasing your dream home, buying real estate can, at times, be a difficult process to navigate.
Here are a few tips for any home or investment property buyer. First Time Home Buyers:
- Make a wish list. Talk/meet with your realtor and discuss what you are looking for in your home, and what neighborhoods you are interested in. Their job is to get to know you and meet your needs, so don't be alarmed if they suggest an area or home you haven't yet considered.
- Don't judge a book by its cover. Same goes for a house. Visit the property in person, look around, and visualize the potential. When you buy a house, it's not just a place to live, it's an investment.
- Consider all of the costs. Aside from the monthly mortgage payment, make sure you have a financial grasp and budget for what it takes to own a home.
- Make a reasonable offer. When it comes to negotiating with the seller, the three most important matters are information, preparation, and realism.
- Find the right neighborhood. It's important to know the dynamics of a neighborhood-- are most homes owner occupied or do some rental properties exist? Location is also key when it comes to tenant retention and happiness.
- Be aware of local rental regulations. It is a safe assumption that you'll need to bring your property into accordance with local rental regulations prior to earning any income from the property.
Luxury Real Estate:
- Learn about the search process. Many luxury homes go unlisted to protect the seller's privacy. By hiring a local, luxury real estate specialist, you can use their connections to identify which homes are for sale, and meet your search criteria.
- Consider the financing. The loan process for luxury homes typically takes longer than for smaller mortgages. Since it can take extra time, you will want to be pre-qualified early in your home search process.
- Thoroughly inspect any property you are considering making an offer on. In many cases, luxury homes are larger and have amenities that may require specialized home inspectors.
Second Home or Vacation Property:
- Choose your location/destination carefully. You'll want a place for you and your loved ones to gather that is easily accessible and offers a variety of activities for everyone to enjoy.
- Buy under your budget. If you are planning on hiring someone to maintain your house while you are at your primary residence such as landscaping, there will not be much wiggle room in your budget to afford it.
- Understand the tax implications. A qualified real estate agent should be able to provide details about taxes in the area, and possibly even tips on ways to save, such as buying just outside the city limits.