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Financial Advantages of Condo Ownership

Financial Advantages of Condo Ownership

Condominiums have been rising in popularity over the past few years and it is not surprising why with so many different financial benefits associated with this type of real estate it appeals to a very wide market. Within this article we are going to outline several of the financial advantages to owning a condo. Hopefully this will provide you with an opportunity to see a different side of real estate today and you can begin to learn how to make real estate work for you.

One of the most obvious benefits of owning a condo is the incredible low down payment required. This is a definite advantage to note if you are a first time buyer or a retiree trying to relocate to a more convenient location. No matter what your current financial situation you more than likely can afford a down payment on a condo in your chosen location. First time home buyers are flocking to the condo market because of this low down payment. It makes it more affordable to own your own home for a fraction of what you would pay for a single family detached dwelling.

Next, as the owner of a condo you have the opportunity to live within the condo yourself or rent it for a profit while you are not there. Whether this condo is a second home to you or purely an investment property you will find it to be a very successful real estate venture. Many people choose to utilize their condo for two to three months out of the year and sublet for the rest of the year making a profit on their purchase. This is also a great way to build up equity. By choosing to live within the condo you eliminate additional house payments from a second home and you can live comfortably knowing the price of your condo is only going to increase over the years.

Most people find renting a condo to be far superior to renting an apartment because of all the amenities such as: weight-room, common areas, tennis courts, games room, swimming pool and so on. The majority of people could never have all these amenities within their home but you get them with a condo purchase! You enjoy all these amenities and only have to pay a small maintenance fee each month. This fee includes maintenance of these common areas as well as snow removal, grass cutting, gardening etc. What this means for you or your tenant is that you have no chores or maintenance to take care of yourself making it a relaxing place to live.

No matter where you live in the world today you will find condominium projects going up rapidly. More and more people are choosing this less complicated way of life versus traditional residential homes and loving every second of it! Whether you are buying an already built condo or buying in at the pre-construction phase you are going to save a great deal owning this condo allowing you to save for a larger home in the future or simply save funds for travel and fun!…

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Real Estate Valuation

Real Estate Valuation

The property valuation company will give a comprehensive property valuation report. Based on the property valuation reports, one can estimate the price of their property. The property valuation varies from place to place depending on the property law of the state on the future prospects of that particular place. You can evaluate your property basing on the formula, in many places there are number of professional agencies that can help you in evaluation of your property. There is a property valuation degree provided by few colleges, person who holds such degree would be the best person who can evaluate your property, why just let someone handle it when you can get the best. Real estate valuation of your property is the best you can choose.

The number of real estate valuation industries has increased over the years; they have professional staff workers who are efficient and qualified. Real estate valuation is very impotent as it helps you to know the value of a particular property during the time; this is the amount of money that needs to be exchanged between the two parties that include the seller and the buyer. There are number of ways of evaluation of property one such method is income method in this method the income that is gained over such properties through sources like rental are compared with the present property, few other factors are considered like the future use as shopping centers etc. the second method that is used is the comparison method in which the transactions of such similar properties are compared, there are other factors that play a role in the valuation of the property like the amount of money spent on the property after the purchase of the property. The third method is the cost method, it is quite obvious that an old building (school and church) will not be given equal importance to a new one as it would costs the buyer to reconstruct. The profit method is the fourth method of real estate valuation where the valuation is done taking into consideration the trading potential. The last method in real estate valuation is residual method in this method the amount of money required for reconstruction and demolition are considered before valuating the property. The real estate valuation methods that are used mostly are profit method, income method and comparison method. The method to be used depends on the property and the place of the property.

It is advisable to consult a real estate valuation company before taking any decision on the sale of a property. The best thing about the real estate valuation is that they are well experienced enough to evaluate the property taking all the issues into consideration and apply the correct method. Contacting a non professional for evaluating the property may lead to cheating as a normal person cannot asses them. It is therefore required to select the best real estate valuation agency after going through the testimonials and asking people who have earlier contacted them for their property valuation.…

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FHA Renovation Forms That FHA Requires the Borrower to Sign

FHA Renovation Forms That FHA Requires the Borrower to Sign

There are quite a number of forms that FHA requires the borrower to sign, some of the forms others must also sign such as the Contractor, Home Inspector, Loan Officer and others.

Lenders will have additional forms that meet their in-house guidelines these are called overlays and are allowed by FHA. Here I will discuss only the FHA required forms.

It is very important that everyone involved with the loan read and understand what the form means. Ask you Loan Officer for a copy of the forms so that you can read and understand in advance.

The Maximum Mortgage Worksheet is a form that breaks out the renovation soft costs to determine the loan amount and calculate the down payment.

The Borrower’s Identity of Interest form is stating that the buyer does not know the seller of the property and there is no conflict of interest with any of the parties involved in the transaction.

The 203K Acknowledgment form has several important sections. The first section of this form states to the buyer that HUD has not approved the property and does not warrant the condition or value of the property.

In the section titled Loan Requirements, there are 3 boxes that requires one of them to be checked. This boxes states where the interest check will go when the repairs are complete.

The Renovation Funds are held in an interest bearing escrow account. The interest paid is not a lot but it belongs to the buyer. One of the options is to have the interest check mailed to the buyer. I suggest the borrower take the money, it is not a lot and it does not make sense to apply to the principal balance, the monthly payment will not change. The borrower will never realize the money if it is applied to the principal.

The form also explains:

The consequences if the if the work is not completed on time.

When the permits must be pulled and presented to the Lender.

Understanding how and when the Contractor is paid.

Understanding using binding arbitration if disputes arise with the contractor.

Understanding what happens if the borrower changes Contractors during the renovation phase.

Understanding HUD does not provide a warranty on the property.

Making the mortgage payments during the renovation phase.

Understanding that no changes can be made to from the work write-up and any exhibits that were presented to the underwriter for loan approval.

Understanding the contingency funds and how they are used.

The borrower should receive a copy of this and all other forms.

Educating yourself when getting the FHA renovation loan is crucial, this is a complex loan and can be difficult and time-consuming to close. I personally think it is the most exciting loan program on the market.…

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How to Hire a Property Manager

How to Hire a Property Manager

Owning a rental property is a great way to build a nest egg in today’s unstable economy. Unlike bank brokered investments, being a landlord provides a safe and secure investment with a degree of piece of mind because you can look at your house almost anytime you want and rest assured that instances of house theft are extremely rare. Its yours and will be yours until you decide otherwise. Your investment is going nowhere and as sure as inflation exists, your property will appreciate.

The problem with rental property is this; Tenants. Tenants will instinctively have a fundamental philosophical difference from yours and unless you are ready and willing to face their combative dialogue, will inevitably cause you some degree of emotional, financial, or physical grief. Stories of tenant nightmares that are significant enough to cost landlords material amounts of money and emotional stress are passed down from generation to generation and from friend to friend. Surely, you know somebody who was wronged by a rental property tenant.

So what is the answer? A property management firm. A property manager will charge much less than your neighborhood realtor and generally will have a more developed sense of personal interaction due to his or her job description of being able to relate with difficult people.

The rest of this article will address some important issues relating to choosing a property manager.

Rule #1

Be sure that your property management firm is licensed. In today’s scene, ponzi schemes, grand larceny, and corporate crime seem to abound. As a property manager who collects money and in most cases hundreds of thousands of dollars, on behalf of private clients – the potential for fraud exists to a large degree. As a licensed property manager, one has to report all rent and bank account activity to a council or professional body, which makes instances of personal greed, fraud, or mismanagement quite unlikely.

Rule #2

Be sure that your property manager has experience. Most property managers are also property owners who learned the technique of dealing with tenants and chose to exploit their skill for profit. This is a very good thing. Ask your property manager how long he or she has been in the business and what factors influenced their decision to join the field. If they have less experience than you do, I would humbly suggest that you hit the road and keep looking.

Rule #3

Tenants can be a handful and a personable landlord can make all the difference, make sure your property manager is a personable and easy to get along with person. Bad tempers and explosive demands are met with hostility from most tenants.

Rule #4

Check for references who will attest to the quality of service from your property manager. This should be from both tenants and landlords. Asking for references is generally a bad idea because the provider of the reference will hand pick those people whom he or she refers, but other options exist. The first suggestion I have is to check with your prospective property manager’s website, surely there will be a page with vacant rental listings; randomly pick one of these properties and ask your manager if you can speak with the owner of the property, at which time you can ask if the owner/client is happy with the level of communication and service provided. The other option is to ask to speak to a recent tenant and ask them the same question. The response for these references will speak volumes.

These tips should help you to get an idea as to the level of service that the property manager provides, and ultimately the level of service that you should expect to receive.

Trust me. I am a property manager and I know.…

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Cheap Properties You Can Fix and Flip Today

Cheap Properties You Can Fix and Flip Today

People are starting to fix and flip properties today for additional money. While some do it full-time, others carry it out during their free time. Much of the frenzy with rehabbing houses today has to do with the availability of affordable properties. There are a lot of properties you can fix and flip today and here are some examples.

REOs. This stands for real estate owned properties. These were repossessed by banks and other lenders from owners who fail to meet financial obligations such as mortgage. Also known as bank owned homes, REOs have already undergone the foreclosure process. All liens and claims against these houses have are already cleared so you will get a fresh title for the property.

Banks and other lenders, which own these properties, should not be maintaining a huge number of real estate owned properties. They can face sanctions from regulators for doing so. Apart from that, lenders also fear that these houses will tarnish their reputation. If a bank maintains a lot of repossessed properties that might give the notion that it is not careful in assessing borrowers. The number of REOs increased with the recession and is continuing to rise. Because of their number, banks have no choice but to dispose of them at very affordable prices.

Fixer upper homes. These are properties that are cheap because they are in disrepair. While some of them require only minor improvements, others need structural corrections. Avoid fixer upper homes that need repairs like total roof and ceiling replacement and correction of the house foundation. Structural problems can cost you big time and will demolish your chance of earning huge profit from a fix and flip project.

On the other hand, you must look for fixer upper homes that need cosmetic repairs. These are minor improvements like applying a new coat of paint, replacing door knobs, or laying out new carpeting. Landscaping the front yard, replacing lighting fixtures, and installing new faucets and water fixtures are also examples of cosmetic repair. If the fixer upper homes you want to fix and flip need only these repairs go rehab them.

Inherited homes. Though not as common as REOs and fixer upper homes, there are also scores of inherited homes found across the nation. As the name implies, these are properties inherited by owners who usually have a home of their own. These may be old homes owned by their grandparents or other relatives. Since owners have nothing to lose, they sell these homes cheaply to people who rehab properties.…

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Rentals and the Credit Check

Rentals and the Credit Check

Nowadays, it has become the norm for people to demand credit checks even when you are just looking to rent rather than buy. This is to give them a sense of security with regard to your ability to pay on time.

Usually you will be asked questions about how much you earn and will probably have to give them a character reference as well, but it is common for them to also use a credit check to verify information. If you don’t have the best credit, you may have trouble getting a place.

If you do manage to secure an apartment they will often demand a larger deposit than they would otherwise. Mostly, however, they will just straight out deny the applicant without any room for compromise.

Having a poor credit rating is not a death knoll though, there are thing you can do to revivify your credit. In fact, there are specialists out there who will help you breathe some life back into your credit.

Making sure you know exactly where your credit is at before you start looking for a place is essential. This will allow you to make any adjustments before you get denied due to bad credit.

It pays to enquire about your credit because sometimes it is wrong, as this is an area where mistakes occur regularly. You need to do a thorough check and make sure everything is correct before you apply for any properties.

Naturally, some people do not do credit checks. Therefore if you have really bad credit that is beyond redemption then you should look out for this folk. Also, if you have had poor credit before but have rectified it then you can just explain to them what happened and show them you are now on the level.

Alternatively, you can have someone else who has good credit as a co-signatory on your lease. This will make the process so much easier for those with bad credit.…

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Tips For Selling Your Property

Tips For Selling Your Property

Are you planning to sell your property in the recent years? If so, then you need to follow some simple tips so that you can sell your real estate, like for example, your house, without any hassle. Always remember that real estate sales can be a difficult task if you do not follow some simple steps at the time of selling your real estate.

Follow These Simple Real Estate Sales Rules

Have all the papers ready: At first, it is your responsibility to make sure that all the documents of your property are in place, atleast those which proves your ownership of the property. Thereafter, you should also ensure that all taxes related to the property as well as the utility bills have been paid till date. Also, sit down and write a summary of the property that you own. For instance, you need to note down some important details like how old the construction is, the details of the builders, distance of your property from the airport, bus stop, railway station, hospital, market, and so on. If you have all these details ready, then selling your property would become a much easier task for you.

Determine the market value: Try to find out the current market value of your house. This is very important because you need to mention the price that you would charge for selling your house when you talk for the first time with a prospective buyer of your property. With the advent of the internet, this has become a very simple task. You can simply find out the capital values of a similar type of house in your neighborhood by entering all the relevant information that you would be asked for on any of the online real estate portals. But in case you are not so internet savvy, you can also take help from the property valuers or from the real estate agents. They can help a lot in this regard.

Marketing your property: Moreover, you should market your property well. In this regard, you can take the expert help of professionals like real estate agents or you can also give your property details on property portals and classifieds. Remember, property portals would enable you to reach to a large audience base. Try to list your house in as many portals as possible which offer free listing. But remember to mention some important details like for instance the type of ownership, how old the construction is, and so on. In case there is an option of inserting a small image of your property, then do so without any hesitation because the prospective buyers would then be able to judge the condition of your property in a better way. On the other hand, you can also put up advertisements of your property at busy crossings, intersections, and so on.…