Yesterday we spoke about buying a house when you are in a work environment in which you could move often. Today we will pick up where we left off. The key to real estate is to make your money upfront in the deal. That starts by choosing the ideal location.
So what constitutes the ideal location? There are several factors, and it begins by thinking as a seller while you are buying. If you are a young couple with no intentions of having children, you should still factor in the desirableness of the school system—is it considered a good one or not? Why is this important? Because most people buying a home will have children. A bad school system can have a negative impact on your house value. Even though my wife and I plan to home school our daughters, we still evaluate the school system around the homes we buy.
1. Check the school system
2. Is the neighborhood a growing area or an established area. Both have their pros and cons. An established neighborhood can mean stability and mature trees. However, if the houses are too old, while a new part of town is booming with new houses, that might be an issue. In our previous home we bought on the newer side of town. The once booming older section was getting “long in the tooth.” The houses were built too close together and had no land. Turns out that the area flooded, and it did so several times. Our house in the new side of town sold in less than two months and at a profit.
3. That leads me to talk about flood zone. I would check that right away. I don’t look at a house if it is in a 100-year flood zone no matter how attractive it looks. Flooding is devastating. Here in Houston I have seen the damage it does. Our church school was destroyed by the flooding waters of Hurricane Harvey.
4. If considering a home in a new area—make sure to not buy, or think hard about buying, a house in brand new neighborhood. I have seen people buy in a new neighborhood only to find out the builder doesn’t have enough funds to finish building out. Now you are left in a ghost town with little chance of your property appreciating.
5. Do not, do not, buy the most expensive house in the neighborhood. Try to buy in the lower third of the neighborhood. That will give your house more room to appreciate, that is, increase in value.
6. If you can afford it, and find one, buy a single story house. Why? More people prefer single story. Older couples don’t want to climb steps—bones creak. Younger couples with small children don’t want kids falling down the stairs. Vacuuming stairs is inconvenient, and the increased daily traffic with children in upstairs bedrooms is an added burden. A single story home gives you a wider range of prospective buyers.
7. Don’t buy a house with ugly bones. You can’t fix ugly. By bones I mean the physical structure looks cluttered or dated. A round house looks novel, but will eliminate potential buyers. Don’t buy a house that looks like a UFO, or one that looks like a house in the backwoods of Kentucky.
8. Pay attention to the taxes and the tax rate. Can you afford the neighborhood taxes?
9. Get an inspection even if you are buying a new house. Don’t trust the builder.
10. Always get title insurance. If something is later discovered to be wrong with the title of the house, the insurance will take care of it for you.
Theses are some tips to make sure your largest purchase will be a blessing and not a curse.
If you have questions don’t hesitate to ask here. Take charge of your money!
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P.S. Day 308 please pray for the 7.2 million goal for 2020