Category Archives: Property Marketing

Buying A House In A Recession Time – Pros and Cons

Buying a house in a recession time has both pros and cons, and both of these aspects should be examined before this move is made. During a recession the US economy is down, the housing market and home prices are depressed, and there are high unemployment numbers. Consumers tend to become nervous about making big purchases or long-term financial commitments, and lenders require great credit to even consider a mortgage loan. With all of this it can make sense for some individuals to purchase a home during these economic times, as long as the pros outweigh the cons. A careful evaluation should be done to examine the individual situation, and this can help determine whether the advantages of buying a home during tough economic times are worth the drawbacks.

Pros: There are many advantages to buying a house during a recession. As long as you have a 700 or higher credit score and can provide a 20% down payment most lenders will offer a mortgage. In a recession housing values often plummet, and this means that you can get a home for much less now than you could five years ago. There is a wide range of homes on the market, and these include foreclosures as well as private sellers. The current mortgage rates and interest rates are incredibly low, and the homes on the market are priced at fantastic savings in many cases. Another pro is that first time home buyers can take advantage of tax credits worth thousands of dollars. In addition to a large number of foreclosures many home owners have found themselves underwater, and may be extremely motivated to sell. The housing market is a strong buyers market right now, making it an ideal time to buy for many.

Cons: While there are many benefits to buying a house during a recession it is important to remember that there are also drawbacks as well. During a recession the future economic outlook is not clear, and there is a lot of uncertainty. Home prices could continue to fall after the home is purchased, causing you to lose value and equity quickly. You could end up losing your employment if your employer downsizes or closes the doors, and this could make it impossible for you to stay current on the mortgage payments. In tough economic times many people move to a better location, and if you have purchased a home this may be difficult to do. The rising cost of fuel and food may make finances tight, and this could result in foreclosure in the future.

Buying a house during a recession will make sense for many people. You can get a larger and higher priced home for less thanks to dropping home values, but this could also be a drawback as well after you have made the purchase. This method can be very beneficial for many, but it is not right for everyone. For some individuals the drawbacks of this purchase and the uncertainty caused by the poor economy mean that now is not the time to purchase a home.

What Most Home Buyers Seek?

Why do people purchase a home, of their own, and does it correspond with, why they should? Before you commit, to investing, in what, for most, is their single, biggest, financial asset, it’s important to focus on what you actually seek, need, and hope to achieve, by buying a house! Open – your eyes, and consider, what you might need, to make this, one of the best personal decisions, and serves the best interests of you, and your family! With that in mind, this article will attempt to briefly consider, examine, review, and discuss, what this means, and represents, and why it should make a difference, for you.

1. Price and costs: While most want to live, in the nicest house, they can. and proudly, show – it – off, to their friends and family, what good is buying a home, if it makes your life, more stressful, etc? Objectively, and introspectively, consider, the impact of reducing your other assets, because of the amount of your down – payment. Will this create stress? How much are the monthly carrying charges, and can you, not only afford it, but do so, within your personal comfort zone? Do you have the necessary reserves, for contingencies, including; short – term employment gaps; necessary repairs; desirable renovations and/ or alterations, etc? Don’t become, house – rich, but hurt yourself, in terms of stress, etc!

2. Size and features: How many rooms do you need, and how does compare with what you want? What are your present needs, in terms of size and number of bedrooms, bathrooms, etc, and what do you anticipate in the short – term, and longer – term future? Are you ready, willing and able to maintain, and care for, whatever house, you purchase? Will you personally do the work, or will you hire someone else to do so, and if you will, how will that impact your overall budgeting, etc? Don’t overlook what most homeowners state, are the most important areas of a house, including the kitchen area, bedrooms (size and number), and bathrooms (number, location, etc)!

3. Intentions: Are you planning to stay, at the specific location, short – term, or the longer – run? Know what you seek, and plan accordingly. If you are buying, for now, and willing to move, when your needs, change, consider resale value, and emphasize present needs. Otherwise, look at the bigger picture!

4. Comfort zone: Know what makes you comfortable and happy, and do what’s best for you. People differ, and so, don’t try to Keep up with the Jones’, but, rather, do, what makes you happy, comfortable, and meets your personal needs, goals, and priorities!

A wise, aware home buyer, is, generally, the individual, happiest, with their decisions! Be prepared, and proceed accordingly, and smartly!

Why Do You Want To Buy A House?

There is no such thing, as a one – size – fits – all reason, or set of reasons, individuals decide, and/ or desire, to buy, a home, of their own. Some do it, because of family needs, others may want to own pets, etc, and others, decide it makes more financial sense to own (than continue renting), and/ or want to live, somewhere, where they might put, their personal seal, on the accommodations, or seek a specific lot of land, etc. These are just, a few of the reasons, but to ensure, one purchases, when it serves their best – interests, and does so, intelligently, and in a focused manner, prospective homeowners should clearly know their personal reasons, thoroughly, and in a somewhat, objective way.

1. Can you afford owning?: Owning a house of your own, requires accepting a far greater degree of personal and financial responsibility, than renting. Renters don’t have to worry about most maintenance items, especially major expenses, etc, but that, all, changes, when one owns. Start by thoroughly considering your present finances, including savings, earnings, debt, and preparedness. Will you qualify for an affordable mortgage? Have you saved, and accumulated significant reserves, in order to be prepared, and ready, for any foreseeable possibility? Wise homeowners put together reserves for repairs, renovations, upgrades, and maintenance, etc, in addition to possessing a mortgage reserve, of approximately 6 – 9 months, equivalence. Since, for most, the value of your house, represents your single – biggest, financial asset, doesn’t it make sense, to proceed wisely, and in a focused way?

2. Area/ neighborhood: When you rent, your lease is for a finite period, so it is rather easy, and straight – forward, to relocate to another locale, if you discover you, either don’t like the particular area, neighborhood, region, or house, or if your life circumstances, change, such as employment, etc. Obviously, since selling a house, is a little more complicated, timely, and less predictable, this should be one consideration, before proceeding.

3. Really want to own a pet or pets: Only a minority of rentals, permit individuals to own pets, and, even, then, must be clearly specified, and is often limited. For true pet lovers, who simply don’t want to be without a beloved pet, it might be one reason to purchase a house.

4. How much land do you want/ need? Some love having a larger lot, either for flowers, gardens, etc. Others want to have place for patios, pools, or convenient places for their pets, to roam. However, others do not want that type of responsibility, and/ or can’t afford to maintain these (Isn’t that one reason, some prefer condominiums?). While some want large lots, others seek somewhat less. Know thy self!

5. Mortgages: Most home buyers purchase houses, with the aid, of a mortgage loan. One consideration is how much you qualify for, and perhaps, equally important, is how much you will feel comfortable paying. Remember, your payment includes principal, interest, real estate taxes (and other escrow items including insurance, etc). Don’t become, house – rich, and life – poor!

Before buying your home, fully consider your needs, desires, wants, and means, and proceed, wisely, and in a way, where ownership will be a pleasure, rather than a stress! Will you proceed wisely, or impulsively?

Avoiding the Emotions When Buying a Home

When you are buying a home it is easy to let your emotions drive you. This is good sometimes, but there are times when this can be a very bad thing. Wrong decisions can easily be made when you are letting your emotions take over. The last thing you want is regret when you are buying a house. It is a decision that will take you until you get your next home, so it is a big one. Making rational decisions is usually the best option. There are three emotional pitfalls that people easily fall into when buying a home. This article will list and detail those pitfalls and tell you why these things should be avoided.

You often hear home owners talking about how they fell in love with their house. This may be the case, but this can easily be turned into a pitfall. It is easy to fall in love with a great house and then not be able to afford it. This can crush the home buyers experience and change their attitude for the rest of the shopping period. This is something you want to avoid. One way to avoid this is by getting pre-approved. If you do this, then you know what your price range is from the start. You can then shop in that range and never have to fall in love with a home you cannot afford.

After you find the dream home that you can afford, you can make an offer on it. But what if someone else wants the same house? They may make an offer that is better than yours and it can turn into a bidding war very easily. This can end up with you paying more than the home is actually worth. If you let your emotions drive you through the bidding war then this is an easy pitfall to get into. You either have to be logical about it, and do the numbers yourself, or have someone tell you when you should stop. The bidding war can be bad if you let your emotions take over. You do not want to pay more for the house than you have to.

Another pitfall comes in the form of repairs. If you are buying a home that is pre-owned, then there may be repairs that need to be done. This can be a good thing, but you need to look at yourself and ask if you can really do everything. Just because you are in love with a house does not mean it is best for you right now. Having a home that needs repairs will be very bad down the line and you want to fix everything as soon as possible. If you cannot do this, then the home may not be right for you.

These three things are crucial to remember when you want to buy a home. When you fall in love with a home, then you know it. But, being rational about everything is definitely a good thing to do. Remember to avoid these things and you will be fine.

Is There A Perfect Time, To Buy, A House?

As someone, who has been a Real Estate Licensed Salesperson, in the State of New York, for over a decade, as well as having, also, had a considerable degree of experience, in financial sales and advising, as a financial planner, and Registered Representative, Supervisor, Manager, and executive, I have often, been asked, when/ if, there is a perfect time, to buy. Whether this is related to buying stocks, bonds, or other investments, or buying a home, the attempt to market – time, has rarely worked, consistently. While, with other investment, a disciplined approach, works best, in most cases, in buying a house, the best approach, is probably, proceeding, in a well – considered, introspective, objective manner, and honestly knowing and understanding your personal needs, goals, priorities, comfort zone, and personal finances. With that in mind, this article will attempt to review, consider, and briefly discuss, how, although, there is no perfect time, it is wise to consider, when it’s best, for you.

1. Personal needs, goals, priorities: Why do you want to buy a house? What about a particular house, attracts you? How many bedrooms do you need, and how many would you prefer, and why? How about bathrooms? What do you seek in your kitchen, and why, and what do you actually, need? Are you able to look past the staging, etc, to determine the difference between quality, and perceptions?

2. Comfort zone: Sit back, and look, objectively, and introspectively, so you know, why you want a house, what you can afford, and what amount of monthly payment, might conform with your personal comfort zone. You don’t want to end up, house – rich, and unable to proceed, with less stress, etc! A wise home buyer, finds a house, which exceeds his needs, meets some of his wants/ dreams, and does so, without excess stress, tension, and/ or, hassle!

3. Personal finances: Do you know, what you can afford? Many factors should be considered, including, down – payment, reserve for items such as contingencies, repairs, renovations, utilities, etc. Simply because you have the down – payment, and qualify for a mortgage, doesn’t necessarily mean, you will be well – served, by the financial necessities of home ownership! Know yourself!

4. When matters!: Certain factors are extremely important. What are the present mortgage interest rates, and how large, a mortgage will you need? Understand, small changes in these rates, matter! What about supply, and demand? Don’t purchase something, you aren’t satisfied with, either to Keep up with the Joneses, or to take advantage of the present market, because if you do, you might be disappointed, in the long – run!

Be a smart home buyer. It’s not about trying to buy at the perfect time, but finding what you need, not over – paying, discovering something, you’re pleased with, and being able to afford it!

6 Home Buying Considerations Other Than The House

We often focus on the bones – of – a – house, when deciding whether to purchase a particular residence, but, while that’s essential, an educated home buyer, recognizes and realizes, there are other relevant considerations, as well. In fact, before one, should even view and/ or consider a particular house, he should thoroughly consider these factors, to ensue he will also be happy, and satisfied, living there. With that, in mind, this article will attempt to briefly, examine, review, and discuss, 6 important home buying considerations.

1. Location/ convenience: A central premise in real estate, is, Location, location, location. The greatest house, in a less – than – optimal neighborhood, and/ or area/ location. serves very little positive, productive purpose! Some of the factors included in this sub – topic, include: Does it meet your personal needs?; Does it simplify or complicate your life/ existence?; Are the things, you personally, prioritize, readily available, and convenient, in this location?

2. Safety: Check the safety statistics of the areas, you are considering. What are the crime rates, relative to other alternatives? How safe does the area make you feel? Will your house be safe, largely free – of – crime, and is there, little crime, vandalism, etc, in this vicinity? Who wants to live somewhere, where he feels unsafe, and/ or insecure?

3. Education: Whether you have school – aged children, or, simply, want to assist your future ability to re – sell the house, the local school system, must be, both, actually, as well as perceived as, being superior, and above – average! If you have children, you want them to get the best education, possible, from the local schools, wouldn’t you?

4. Transportation: Since many individuals commute to work, the ease, quality and/ or convenience of mass transit, is often a relevant factor. In addition, how easily can one get to places of interest, including shopping, the arts, etc?

5. Shopping: Most people want their essential shopping, to be as easy and simple, as possible! Especially when this comes to food shopping, pharmacies, and conveniences, individuals would rather, not have to go out of their way, to do, what they feel, most essential.

6. Specific neighborhood: Even within the same, basic area, there are often significant differences, from neighborhood, to neighborhood. Where I reside, some people live uptown, while others prefer living near the water. Depending on one’s personal priorities, and preferences, this often makes, a significant difference, in where one wants to live. Speak to some of the neighbors, and determine, if you’d like to live there!

Using these 6 home – buying considerations, often, help people determine the best place, for them, to live. Will you do what’s in your personal, best interest?

Before Buying A Home, Know Where You STAND!

Since, for most of us, the value of our home, represents our single – biggest, financial asset, wouldn’t it make sense, to be certain, we proceeded, forward, in the best, most logical manner? This means, knowing, and understanding, our needs, goals, and objectives, in terms of our finances, personal comfort zone, needs, goals, priorities, and what we seek, need, deserve, desire, and want, in the house, we purchase. Potential homeowners should carefully examine, and ask themselves, where they STAND, and whether, the so – called, American Dream, is for them. With that in mind, this article will attempt to, briefly, consider, examine, review, and discuss, using the mnemonic approach, what this means and represents, and how it might make one, pursue their quest, in a personally, wiser, and more satisfying way.

1. Schools; shopping: Not only, do most of us, want to provide the finest education, to our families, it’s important to recognize, the direct correlation, in most cases, between quality, local educational resources, and maintaining property values! It’s also important, at times, to consider, school taxes, and their impact on affordability! Another key consideration, to many, is convenience to shopping, especially for food, and certain others, essential conveniences!

2. Transportation: How important is convenient access to mass transportation, to you? Are the trains, buses, and highways/ expressways, meet your needs, and make your life easier, and more stress – free?

3. Area: Before buying any house, walk around the neighborhood. Consider, whether, the specific location is appealing, and what you like, and/ or, dislike about the neighborhood. Examine the specific strengths and weaknesses of the area, and see if it meets your primary, and key needs, and priorities. Is it safe, convenient (in terms of your primary needs, such as transportation, ease of commuting, shopping, Houses of Worship, etc), and someplace, you want to live?

4. Needs: Closely examine your needs, both, currently, and into the future, and see if the specific house, meets your immediate, as well as longer = term needs, and necessities!

5. Determine: Are you capable of looking at a potential home, without letting your emotions, dominate your logic? Can you, effectively, and efficiently, determine, what might be, the right house, for you, and your family? What do you feel comfortable with, in terms of downpayment, monthly costs, maintenance, and your personal job security? Take the time, to determine, if it’s a good – fit, for you?

Take your time, and make the wisest personal decision. Identify your personal preferences, and proceed, in a head/ heart balance, so you clearly know, from the onset, where you STAND!

A 5 – Step Plan To Prepare To Buy A House

Although, owning a home of one’s own, is often considered, a major component of the so – called, American Dream, wouldn’t it make sense, to effectively, plan, to ensure this doesn’t become a nightmare, instead? After, over fifteen years, as a Real Estate Licensed Salesperson, in the State of New York, I have created, what I, often, refer to, as the RICH IDEAS, for proceeding, wisely, in terms of buying a house. With that in mind, this article will attempt to, briefly, consider, examine, review, and discuss, a 5 – step plan, for properly, effectively, wisely, being prepared for this process, and proceeding accordingly.

1. Put together/ accumulate sufficient funds, for a variety of requirements and necessities: It’s smart to proceed, as well – prepared, as possible, from the beginning. Well – before, you start searching for a house, begin saving money, in a systematic way. Remember, you will not only need funds, for the down – payment (often, but not always, 20%), but, also, funds for other Closing Costs, including, but not limited to, pre – paid real estate taxes, utilities, and other, so – called, escrow items. In addition, most lending institutions require a demonstration, and proof of funds, equal to several months, of mortgage payments.

2. Obtain a copy of your Credit Report (if husband and wife, get both): You are entitled, once per year, to request a free copy of your Credit Report, from one of the major credit organizations/ companies. Review this document carefully, and correct any errors. If your rating is not, as high, as a lending institution may seek, begin to take steps, to enhance and improve it, sooner, rather than later!

3. Pay – down other debt: Lending institutions use formulas, to determine one’s qualification, to receive funds. These are generally, focused on, one’s percentage of debt to income. Therefore, pay – down your other debt, prior to beginning the process!

4. Don’t add any other debt: Avoid acquiring any more debt, regardless of how convenient, and/ or, appealing, it may seem, at the moment. Don’t fall into the trap, of, accepting new store charge accounts, because doing so, may compromise your credit worthiness, when you seek a mortgage!

5. Shop for homes, within your means: Avoid the trap, of becoming, house – rich, and seeking to purchase a home, beyond your comfortable means! Know, how much, you can afford, comfortably, and securely, so you choose, wisely, and remain, comforted!

Since, for most of us, the value of our house, is our single – biggest, asset, doesn’t it make sense, to proceed, carefully, and wisely? Will you be up to this task?

Why Will You BUY A Home?

Although, we consider, owning a home, of one’s own, to be a major component of the so – called, American Dream, few consider, why it is, and whether, it is relevant, to their personal dreams, needs, and best – interests! Before anyone should begin the process, the first thing, to do, should be, to realistically, consider, their personal reasons, and why, they want to BUY a house. This should be a realistic, thorough, process, which includes, many relevant factors, including, but not limited to, their personal needs, goals, priorities, and perceptions, financial capabilities, family issues, employment factors, transportation considerations, safety, schools, and how, one house, might benefit them, to a greater degree than others. With that in mind, this article will attempt to briefly, consider, review, and discuss, using the mnemonic approach, what this means and represents, and why it matters.

1. Best; better; benefits; beliefs; bringing: Where we live, often, depends, on what, it seems to be, bringing, to us! Our personal beliefs, are a significant factor, and, thus, we must consider, if living somewhere, might make our existence, better, and happier/ more satisfying! Isn’t the goal, of most of us, to do, whatever, we can, to become, the best, we can possibly become? The essential combination of thoroughly considering our true needs, and the best way, to address them, must be one of the keys, to whether, we should buy, a home, of our own! Never forget to realistically, consider, factors, such as affordability, self – image, schools. safety, and whatever, your personal priorities and perceptions, might be!

2. Useful; unique; uses; urge; usual/ unusual: Buying a home, must serve, both, your usual, as well as unusual, needs, goals, and priorities! What urges, might, doing so, address, and meet? When considering, one potential house, versus another, what unique characteristics, and/ or attributes, are most important to you, and why? How will you use/ utilize your home, and why will doing so, be helpful, meaningful, and useful?

3. You; your: How will a home, of your dreams, meet, and/ or, exceed, your personal needs, and expectations? How will you make, your residence, your own? Why will doing so, benefit you, in a realistic, viable, relevant manner? Before making any decision, it’s important to seriously consider, how. your dream house, might make your life, more self – satisfying, and happier?

Before making the decision, and commitment, to BUY, a home, of your own, will you consider, your personal reasons, and why, you believe, it’s a good decision, for you! Are you up to the task, of doing so?

What to Inspect Before Buying an Older House

Homes have changed over the years along with the standard in which the homes are built. Some conditions change over the years because the level of knowledge has increases over the years as building science is studied. Some conditions are the result of past or current home owners that alter the condition or add items to the home. Here are some important areas to inspect or have inspected if you are buying an older home.

Attic and the roof system is an important system to inspect. The attic space and the roofing effect each other and if correct they will help extend the life of each other. Older homes may have less insulation than is recommended by modern standards. Having the proper amount will help the home owner reduce heating and cooling bills.

The amount of ventilation in the attic space is also important, too little ventilation can result in high attic temperatures which will age the shingles more rapidly. A lack of ventilation can also create a condition where moisture is trapped and condensation is formed. High moisture levels can aid in the growth of mold, reduce the effectiveness of insulation and create a conducive condition for wood destroying insects. Home owners will also improperly vent shower vents in to the attic space exaggerating the moisture issues.

Electrical systems should also be inspected. Older homes especially those built before the 1960’s have a chance of having two prong outlets instead of the modern three prong outlets. The size of the service can also be an issue. Amperage for older homes may not be enough when additions are added onto the home and electrical appliances are added to the home.

Energy efficiency has made great improvement over the years. Old gravity furnaces made still be operating (yes I have come across them) however, the gravity furnace is not an energy efficient appliance. The cost of replacing such a furnace will be well worth the expense as the energy savings will be more than enough to recoup the cost. Energy efficiency has also improved for other appliances such as refrigerators and air conditioners. Although determining the efficiency of appliances is not in the scope of a normal home inspection you can be fairly certain that any appliance over 15 years old is not the tops when it comes to being energy efficient.

Other areas that will be looked at that are done during all home inspections include the grading and the gutters and downspouts. These areas can effect the foundations and moisture issues. These should be inspected during all home inspections, however with increased age they are more likely to be in need of repair or improvements.