Wednesday, 27 January 2016

Deciding on the Right Neighborhood for Your Next Home? Our Okanagan Real Estate Agents Can Help!

When choosing the right neighborhood for your next home, its imperative that you keep these things in mind:

OMREB writes...

When buying a home, the neighbourhood you select will not only play a pivotal role in your family's life but will also affect the resale value of the property.
One person's ideal neighbourhood, however, may differ greatly from another's. Regardless, there are some needs and wants that generally do not change. The distance from your new home to schools, churches and shopping, for example, will not only affect how you and your family settle into your new home it will also draw or turn off a future prospective Buyer.
A good first step is to enlist the services of a REALTOR® who works in the area you are thinking of moving to. REALTORS® are familiar with the communities in which they work and can answer many of the questions that you will develop during your search.

Check the lifestyle
A home is part of a larger community and, frankly, some communities are more desirable than others. Some communities are geared more to young families, while others cater to older adults and still others to singles or to an eclectic mix of residents.
Never buy in an unfamiliar community or neighbourhood unless you have spent some time there both during the week and on a weekend, day and night. Drive and walk around. Talk to store owners and people you meet on the street. Ask what they think of the neighbourhood.
If there are vacant tracts of land where you plan to buy, check with local authorities to see what the proposed land use might be. The last thing most home owners want is the development of a mall or high-rise office building across the road from their newly-purchased, residential property.

Don't let particular features in a home that appeals to you override its location and potential subsequent resale value. When analyzing a potential property, ask yourself if you can imagine living  not just in this home  but in this neighbourhood for the long term.
Remember that someday you may have to sell your home to someone else and things that may not be important to you - such as distance to schools, shopping, doctors and work - may be important to other Buyers.

Location, location, location
In addition to finding the right neighbourhood, consider the other homes immediately around the particular property you are interested in. Are they well-maintained and worth the same as, or more than the home, you are considering?
Is the location a quiet area or a major traffic thoroughfare? What kind of privacy does the backyard provide? Does the yard get morning or afternoon sun? If there is no house behind the prospective property, who owns that property and how will it be developed?  Check zoning and proposed development applications with the local municipal or regional authority.
Homes located further away from the centre of an urban area are generally less expensive. Are you prepared to invest the time and money it takes to commute and how long of a commute are you prepared to commit to? Is there public transit and good access to major roads nearby?

If you have children in school, what kinds of schools and services are available? Special needs and French immersion programs may not be as easy to access in some neighbourhoods. Will your children have to be bussed to their school? If a school is close by, will they have to cross any major intersections?
Being too close to a school, on the other hand, may have some drawbacks - few owners want the noise and disturbance of being located right next door.
Finding malls, grocery and specialty stores in urban, residential areas is rarely a problem. But, in neighbourhoods further away from urban areas, you may need to drive to the nearest convenience store. And getting to the local grocery store, pharmacy and other support services may require an even longer trek.
It's great to be located near parks and recreational facilities, but few homeowners appreciate the tennis court lights beaming into their backyards. If the home you are considering backs onto such a property, drive around the area and see how often the baseball diamonds, soccer fields, swimming pools and skating rinks are being used and when.

More serious concerns may involve having such things as gas stations, an airport, railway tracks, commercial developments, major arteries and cemeteries very close by. Before making a decision, think of your lifestyle and how a particular location would enhance or detract from it.

Friday, 22 January 2016

Is There a Best Time to Sell Your House?

Property sells year round. It is mostly a function of supply and demand, as well as other economic factors. The time of year you choose to sell can make a difference in the amount of time it takes and the final selling price. Weather conditions are often a consideration in some provinces than in other parts of the country. Generally the real estate market picks up in the early spring.

During the summer, the market usually slows. The end of July and August are often the slowest months for real estate sales. The strong spring market often places upward pressure on interest rates, many prospective home buyers and REALTORS® take vacations during mid-summer.

After the summer slowdown, sales activity tends to pick up for a second, although less vigorous, season which usually lasts into November. The market then slows again as buyers, sellers and REALTORS® turn their attention to the holidays.

The supply of homes on the market diminish because sellers often wonder whether or not they should take their homes off the market for the holidays. There are still buyers in the market place, but now those buyers have fewer homes to choose from. Those homes on the market at that time have considerably less competition. Generally speaking, you'll have the best results if your house is available to show to prospective buyers continuously until it sells.

Wednesday, 13 January 2016

Real Estate Investing

"People from all backgrounds and all walks of life have found amazing success in the world of real estate investing. If you feel that you have what it takes to generate real profits in this way, but just need a bit of know-how, this article is for you. Keep on reading to get some terrific advice.

Before investing in real estate, try analyzing the market and researching thoroughly. It is best to compile information on at least 50 properties from your target area and put this into a spreadsheet. You should look at prices, anticipated rents and repair budgets. This will help you figure out which deals are the best.

Remember that real estate investing is all about the numbers. When you’re buying a home to live in, you may get emotional about the place, but there’s no room for that in investing. You need to keep your eye on the data and make your decisions with your head, not your heart.

Don’t invest in property that has not been personally inspected by a third-party or neutral professional. Also, never use an inspector offered by the seller. Always get your inspection from someone whom you personally trust.

Stick with a niche that you feel comfortable dealing with. You can successful invest if you focus on that market segment. No matter what type of investing, keeping with what you know will really help you succeed.

If you purchase a property and need to make repairs, be wary of any contractors who ask for money in advance. You should not have to pay before the work is done, and if you do, you run the risk of getting ripped off. At the very least, never pay the full amount ahead of time.

You never want to dig on a property regarding home improvement because there might be buried lines. In some places, it is illegal to do any kind of digging and you also don’t want to damage the property.

If you are thinking about purchasing real estate to rent, hiring someone to manage the property to help screen good solid tenants is a must. Applicants should have a good credit history since you are going to be relying on rental income to pay the bills. If not, you may start bleeding money."