The goal of any real estate investor is to earn as much as possible with minimal risk. You can only achieve this if you know how to make smart choices. This means you need to know the three things that make a great real estate investment.
Firstly, you need to find a good return. To invest in the illiquid asset that is real estate, you will have to take money out of your liquid assets. What you should look for is to get the same or similar rate of return. Basically, you must find good cash flow properties, not money pits.
On a personal level, you need to have excellent people skills and be a skilled manager and negotiator. Practically, you must be able to do repairs, or have people on board who can do this for you. Lastly, you must hire a property inspector. In most cases, a real estate investor becomes a landlord. This means that you must learn about being a landlord and how to find tenants that are desirable. To make it in real estate investing, you need money to spend so you an make more. You will be unlikely to succeed if you don’t have any money of your own. You are now ready to become an investor, which means you can start looking into locations. Spend time at town board meetings, go online and use local libraries. You must learn about what the location is like and how it is likely to develop.
You may want to consider investing through a REIT (real estate investment rrust). REITs are popular because they are cheaper to get involved in, but the returns you will see are not as high either. REITs are popular because you are essentially investing in real estate corporations. This includes things such as shopping malls and industrial complexes. You can find the value of a REIT on the stock exchange and NASDAQ. A REIT, essentially, is like a mutual fund that only looks at real estate. You do need to think about a few things before you invest in a REIT. Look into the economic conditions of the locations of the key holdings first. Find out how the REIT has performed in the past. You should also investigate their future plans. Looking into the REIT’s manager and what their experience is. Finally, what is the state of the current real estate market and how will the REIT respond to any changes in this market?
Immediate Suggestions When Looking At Selling a House
A lot of individuals are beginning to invest in real estate so if you have any plans of selling your house, you should do it now. The only dilemma is that it’s extremely difficult to sell a house.
You might have seen plenty of articles stating that selling a house is easy or you’ve seen some ads informing you that they can sell your house within a specific amount of time. If you are likely to lower the asking price of the house, it’s going to be a lot more desirable to the buyers, but this is not a good thing to do.
Even though the supply outstrips the demand in the real estate market, there are still a lot of methods to sell your house. We’re going to offer you a few tips to successfully sell your home.
Think About Curb Appeal
First impression lasts so your property should be attractive enough to seize the interest of a customer the first time they see it. You must put yourself in the shoes of a buyer and appraise the curb appeal of your property.
Head out into the streets and have a look at your home to find out all of its shortcomings. You must determine if it is attractive enough for the prospective customers and you should also check all of the things that need to be maintained.
The prospective customers always see the exterior of house firsthand and many of them are always paying attention on how their new house would look like in the outside. You have to prepare everything and repair everything.
Do Some Renovations In Your home
You need to make the essential enhancements outside and inside of your home to make certain that you could attract the buyers. They always want a total package when buying a house so you need to make certain repairs. If you’re the seller, you have to be sure that you could fix everything. Nonetheless, you must not over improve your home because some improvements will not really make a big difference to the price of the house. Upgrades will undoubtedly increase the value of your home together with its chances to be sold, but you cannot make any renovations that will not provide any benefits to you. You must do your research and put money in the things that can offer the best ROI.
Depersonalize Your Property
Some folks claim that adding more designs to your property will increase its odds of being sold, but you have to understand that personal items, collectibles and art works have to be removed because they will not really help in selling the house.
The best thing that you can actually do is to eliminate all of them and only leave the necessary furniture to help make the rooms a bit larger. The main objective here is to allow the customers to picture themselves living in the house.
They will start pointing at every part of the house while visualizing what they need to put there if they will buy the house so you need to make certain that unneeded and personal items will probably be eliminated.
The Value Should be Competitive
In case you are going to sell a home in Marietta, GA, you must place a competitive value for the property. If you’ll put a lower price, it’s going to actually be the same as leaving money on the table and if you put a high price, it’ll be unattractive to the buyers. In case you’re speaking about home buying, the customers always look for houses that are very similar to yours and compare the prices. If your house is a bit pricey, the buyer will check other houses and ignore you. Most of these buyers are only counting on home financing so they can’t afford houses that are too costly. Although you may sell the house for a lower price if you want, you won’t be able to get back your investments.
Employ A Real Estate Agent
You cannot sell a house without professional help and it will probably be a bad idea to do it by yourself. If you won’t employ a professional real estate agent, it’s going to be very difficult to sell your property as you do not have the knowledge and experience to do this. If you’ll try to do this on your own, there is a huge chance that your house won’t be sold or you will not obtain an excellent deal from it. You may actually get lucky to obtain a good deal for the house, but you must always remember that selling a property won’t be about luck since plenty of money is at stake.
You should hire an agent and permit them to handle everything for you. You’ll need to pay them for their services, but it’s better than getting a poor deal.
In case you are likely to sell your property, it is best to follow these simple guidelines so you will not make any mistakes. It is true that these guidelines are very basic, but you can assume that you could sell your house quickly if you’ll follow all these.
Contractors often have a bad rep. While there are many scammers out there, there are also many great ones. Don’t let the stereo type make you believe that you can’t find a trustworthy contractor. Here are some red flags to recognize to avoid getting scammed before the job begins. The vast majority of contractors are honest, hardworking professionals. However, steps are needed to prevent landing a dishonest one; these include checking references, having a secure contract, and being alert to any red flags.
Scam 1: I need money upfront
This is the most common complaint reported to the BBB (Better Business Bureau). A contractor looking to scam you might tell you that he needs 50% of the project estimate upfront to order materials and rent equipment. Once you pay him, he either disappears altogether, or does sloppy work. He knows you can’t let him go, because he already has thousands of your dollars. Unfortunately, this practice is not limited to contractors. Generally, when you pay anyone for a service before work is completed there is less of an inclination to do a good job, because that person has already been paid.
How to avoid: Never pay more than 10-30% at the most of the job upfront. It is enough money to show the contractor that you are able to pay for their services, but small enough to where they have motivation to get the job done right. A lot of people fall into this trick because they “feel bad.” The contractor will convince them that they need more money than this before they begin in order to pay for things ahead of time. Know that if they are experienced, they will have ties with certain companies who provide to them on credit, because they have a good history with them.
Scam 2: Take My Word for It
When you first meet with the contractor, he’s very agreeable about all of your needs. However, somewhere along the way, he does little things without discussing them with you, and claims that they were “necessary,” but did not speak to you about them, until after the fact. These “little things” often amount to a pretty penny. Rest assured, that those details he “suggested,” and performed without asking you about, will show up on your bill.
Sometimes it is the opposite. Perhaps you told him certain work that did need to be done, but you didn’t include it in the estimate because you thought you had a verbal contract. Don’t assume that a verbal contract will hold up–it won’t.
How to avoid: Unfortunately, you have few to no legal options, because you signed a contract that didn’t include details. All you can do is prevent this before it happens by making sure everything is written into the descriptions. If there are any alterations, have you and your contractor initial next to those changes. If there are many changes, a new contract needs to be drawn up.
Scam 3: I Don’t Need to Pull a Permit
A contractor is legally required to get a building permit for any construction project that is considered significant. This is so that building officials can come to the site as often as is needed to be sure that the project is meeting any and all safety or building codes. On smaller jobs, an unlicensed contractor might try to tell you that the building officials won’t notice, or that its “not a big deal.”
How to avoid: Always be sure that the contractor gets a building permit. If he refuses, hire a different contractor who will get one.
Scam 4: We Ran Into Unforeseen Problems
This is the most notorious scam to look out for. This usually comes into play mid-project, and even better, after the job is complete. Suddenly, the price you had previously agreed on is 3x higher than discussed. He will place blame on everything but himself–usually it will be your “house’s” fault. He will tell you that there were structural problems, or wall damage before he began. It is important to be aware that contractors looking to scam will bid jobs suspiciously lower than expected. This is because they plan to find excuses to raise the price later.
How to avoid: Before signing the contract, make sure it includes a procedure for change orders with a description of work, and come up with fixed prices for anything added during the job. The extra work, no matter what circumstances it was needed, can proceed only after the change order is signed by both homeowner and contractor.
Scam 5: I’ve Got Extra Materials
This is a great one–usually this is because they have materials that can’t be returned to a supplier. So they’ll come and drop it off and even quote you a fantastic price. Even if it is a bargain, taking this offer is very risky because you don’t know where these materials came from, and they could break or fall apart in a year or two.
How to avoid: Never hire a contractor on the spot. Take your time to check contractors out to make sure they have a good reputation and perform quality work.
One of the hardest, most important decisions homebuyers face is how much to offer on a house. There is a pretty short list of steps you need to take to make a smart offer that gets you a great value, but is also likely to be successful at getting the property.
Look at the “comps”
When it comes to pricing a home, or making an offer to buy one, the first thing to look at is the home’s fair market value. Both buyers and sellers should work with an experienced, local agent to understand what the home’s value is. Most agents will do this by offering you a look back at similar properties that have recently sold in the neighborhood; these are called comparable sales, or, “comps.” You should be looking at recent sales (3 months or less), very similar properties (such as the same number of bedrooms, bathrooms, or square footage). It is critical that you look at the current home values.
What can you afford? This step is much more critical for buyers than for sellers. It’s a must to make sure that your offer price for any given home falls within the range of what is affordable for you. This includes offering a price within the range for which your mortgage was pre-approved, but also includes making sure that the monthly payment and cash you’ll need to close the deal.
What’s your competition? This is another step at which it’s critical to check in with your agent. You need to know what level of competition you’ll face. As a seller, you can find this out by looking at things like how many comparable homes are listed in your town or your neighborhood in your general price range. The more competition you have, as a seller, the lower you should tweak your list price to attract buyers to come see your home.
Buyers should also be cognizant of the competition level they will face for homes. Believe it or not, even on today’s market there are properties and neighborhoods in which multiple offers are the name of the game. Your agent will be able to brief you on how many offers have been presented on the property you are looking at, the number of days it has been on the market. These are both very important things. You want to see how desperate the seller is before you begin negotiating.
How much do they need to sell
Buyers should see if the home they are interested in has been reduced at all and how much. If the seller is eager to sell, you are at a large advantage. Sellers should be aware that many buyers are not in a high state of urgency to buy these days, given the long-term, high affordability of homes and interest rates. Of course, all of real estate is hyperlocal, so it’s important to understand how motivated buyers are in your local market before you set your list price. The higher these numbers are, the stronger of a buyer’s market it is, and the more bargaining power buyers likely have.
How much do you want to buy, or sell, the place?
‘What’s your level of motivation? But within the range of the home’s fair market value, it may make sense to move higher within that range if you are highly motivated to get that particular property. Sellers should think of the list price as the most powerful marketing tool at your disposal. if you really want or need to sell, get aggressive about setting your price as low as makes sense for your your home’s value and local market dynamics to attract qualified buyers and help your home stand out against all the competition.
Ordinarily, a serious buyer would pay to have a home formally inspected. The goal is to uncover any potential problems before signing on the dotted line, while there’s still time to negotiate.
But sometimes, sellers will have their homes inspected before they even put them on the market. Here are three reasons why a pre-inspection may be a good idea. A pre-inspection is a goodwill gesture. It demonstrates a willingness to go beyond what’s expected, and that sets you apart from other sellers. You’re sending a signal that your house is not hiding any concealed damage and that you’re being upfront about the property. All of this can give potential buyers peace of mind and confidence.
A pre-inspection gives you, the seller, a heads-up if there are problems that a potential buyer will likely want repaired. Once you know what’s wrong, you can have those issues fixed before you list. The cleaner and more problem-free you can make your home, the faster it’s likely to sell.
Because a pre-inspection lets buyers know what they’re getting from the beginning, they can factor any needed repairs into an offer. And by disclosing all known issues upfront, you’re protecting yourself against claims the buyer might make later — which sometimes result in lawsuits.
On the other hand, let’s say you don’t have a pre-inspection. During escrow, the buyer’s inspector discovers problems you didn’t know about. You can be sure the buyer will try to negotiate a lower price, which will cost you money and can delay the sale. The buyer might even cancel the contract.
Assuming you’re not trying to sell a fixer-upper, a pre-inspection can shine a spotlight on your home’s selling points, such as any electrical upgrades you might have had made.
If you’re trying to offload a fixer-upper that would give even the Munsters reason for concern, there’s no point in paying for a pre-inspection. But if you’ve maintained your home and want to sell it as quickly, and as profitably, as possible, a pre-inspection is almost always a good idea.
First impressions last a lifetime. This is true when you meet a new person, when you walk into a new retail store or even a new restaurant. First impressions regarding places are based on how the general atmosphere makes you feel. That being said, the same goes with homes. The first impression your home gives will make a significant impact on that buyer’s decision-making process.
Home staging allows you to highlight the best of your home and de-emphasize its flaws. It can also help you to accentuate those flaws if you don’t put in any effort to do the necessary simple things to stage. The ultimate goal of home staging is to create an atmosphere in which a buyer is able to imagine themselves living there. To imagine the future memories that they will create. Thus, when they are looking to find the home of their dreams to build their life and lifelong memories in, they don’t want to walk into the home feeling another person’s memories. The best way to ensure this doesn’t happen is to create an atmosphere in which the buyer will envision his life there instead of yours. This can be done by attempts to “neutralize” the surroundings. Here are some great ways to DIY home-staging for little to no expense:
•Clear out closets and clutter: this includes the packing, or giving away of toys, linens, and small kitchen appliances. This is the time to go through your belongings and organize. While it is a hassle to go through everything in your home, remember you are going to have to do it anyway when you officially move, so you may as well tackle it now.
•Focus most on the most visible areas: The most important rooms to focus on are all of them. However, if this is not possible, the absolute necessary rooms to stage are the the foyer, kitchen, living room, master bedroom, and family room. The foyer is extremely important, as it will set the tone for how the buyer will view the house.
•Remove any personal items from the home. This is key. As mentioned above, a buyer doesn’t want to walk in feeling like they are coming over to your house for a dinner party. They want to envision themselves hosting a dinner party with their family and friends.
•Use plants to fill any empty spaces. Plants are not only a great way to fill empty spaces, but they are also a great way to invite some “life” into the home.
•Read more articles like this one if you cannot hire a professional stager. There is really no excuse to not get almost all the information you need to DIY, as there are too many outlets available to do so. Great methods to find these ideas are catalogs, searching online, word of mouth, reading related books, or watching design TV shows such as HGTV, or House Hunter. All of these outlets will give you great tips and useful information. It will also give you ideas to decorate your new home!
•Clean out the medicine cabinets. When a potential buyer views the home, one of the most important things they will be assessing is the amount of space and storage the home has. Thus, whatever small things you have tucked away in drawers, or cabinets, will be seen. Not only will clearing these things out make the space appear larger, but the buyer does not want to look at all of your prescriptions and Pepto Bismal.
•Be sure the yard is in good shape, and that the grass looks well-maintained. Again, the yard and the foyer are crucial in creating a positive first impression in the buyer’s eyes.
•Refrain from cooking anything with a pungent smell before prospective buyers come to view the house. No one wants to walk in and smell the salmon you have just made. Also, these smells distract the buyer from having a good first impression when they walk in, because they immediately think about the smell in the air other than focusing on what the entry looks like.
•Hire a professional to clean carpets and windows. Floors are of utmost importance when considering purchasing a home. Dirty carpets are not a good look. Not only does someone not want to have to consider the cost of replacing carpet, but it also gives off the idea that the home was not well-maintained.
•Set the dining table. Remember, staging is about making it easier for the buyer envision themselves in the home. A great way to do this is to set the table; it is easy to do, and it makes all the difference. The buyer can see themselves having parties throughout the year.
•Put fresh flowers throughout the house. Fresh flowers are a great way to make the buyer associate the home with positive feelings, as flowers are correlated with happiness. Be sure to replace them as they die, as buyers do not want to see dead, or wilted flowers. No flowers are better than wilted ones.
•Fireplace: If you have a fireplace and you are showing your home in the fall or winter, use it. Nothing is more inviting to a prospective buyer than a warm fire crackling. All the same, fresh flowers can do wonders. Flowers are related to happiness, and will make a subtle difference.
•Use as much natural light as possible.Light brings a feeling of openness to the house. If during the day, open all blinds or curtains to let as much light in as possible. If you have a yard, consider opening the door before the buyer gets there. It will also make the house inviting, and they will see themselves relaxing on the patio.
•Complete any simple touchups such as a broken fence, or a door that sticks or creaks when you open or close it. All of the “little things” do make a tremendous difference to the buyer. When there are many touchups that need to be done, the buyer takes into account the things they will need to fix. Again, it also shows that the home was not maintained well, as you didn’t take the time to fix something as simple as a faulty doorknob.
•Ask a friend or family member for their opinion. They will be able to point out things that you missed, or give you new great ideas that you hadn’t thought of.
The real secret to a successful home stage is to pretend your home is already sold by removing personal items and memorabilia throughout the home. Buyers must feel that it is theirs!