Categories
Buying a House Real Estate

In the Market to Buy a House? Be a Snooper Shopper

Gene and Katie Hamilton
http://www.diyornot.com

When you’re looking at a house to buy it’s easy to be enamored by its location on a leafy street or the new kitchen cabinets and stylish decorating. But before you make an offer and pay an inspector to do a thorough inspection, do a little investigating yourself. Take a walk-through looking for telltale indications of a not-so-perfect house. If you end up buying the house, you’ll have a more realistic idea of its good and bad points and can negotiate the price accordingly.

Take notes to record what you find, a cell phone or camera for taking pictures and a flashlight to see into tight spaces.

Walk around the exterior of the house looking at the roof for missing or curled shingles. A pair of binoculars helps. Look for rust around the flashing and roof vent.

Look at the siding to see if it’s damaged or loose. Look for signs of mildew which are usually found under eaves, near trees or bushes too close to the siding and on the north side of the house.

Check out the system of gutters and downspouts (binoculars help here.) If it’s a one story house you can usually stand at an angle to see if the gutters are clean or filled with an accumulation of leaves or debris. If it happens to be raining you’re in luck because you can see if there are any leaks in the gutters and if the rainwater flows through the downspouts. At the base of downspouts there should be a diverter or splash block for runoff that carries the water away from the foundation of the house.

Next, go to the basement looking for signs water stains on the walls and floor. Also look on the wall and foundation for cracks and termite tunnels. A trail of them indicates they’re there or have been there and should be eradicated.

Look at the furnace for its last service date and hopefully it’s recent indicating it’s been maintained. Rust at the bottom of the furnace is a telltale of possible water damage.

Go up to the attic and crawl around if you have to, looking on the underside of the roof sheathing for stains.

This isn’t a complete list of what a certified inspector will look for but it should give you some initial background into how the systems of the house have been maintained, an important thing to know if you’re considering being its owner.

We hope you’ll visit us at www.diyornot.com when you’re looking for the cost of home improvement projects.

Categories
Buying a House Real Estate selling a house

Best Time to Buy or Sell a House

Diy092a

When is the best time of year to buy a home? RealtyTrac took a big data approach to this question, analyzing 32 million single family home and condo sales over the past 15 years. The real estate information company and online marketplace for foreclosed and defaulted U. S. properties, compared average sale prices to average estimated market value at the time of sale to determine whether buyers paid a premium or bought at a discount.

Based on the closing date of the sale, they broke down the data by month, weekday and day of the year to identify when buyers historically have realized the biggest discounts. Below are high-level details.
The best month to close on a purchase of a home is October. Out of 2.7 million single family home and condo sales over the last 15 years that closed in October, buyers realized an average discount of 2.6 percent below full estimated market value at the time of sale.

Following October as best months to buy were February, July, December and January – all fall or winter months except for July, which was a surprise given that conventional wisdom would suggest that is a good time to sell but not necessarily to buy at a bargain price.

The worst month of the year to close on the purchase of a home is April, when buyers over the last 15 years have purchased at an average premium of 1.2 percent above estimated market value at the time of sale.

The best day of the year to close on a purchase was Oct. 8 when buyers realized the biggest average discount – 10.8 percent below estimated market value at time of sale – among any of the remaining 356 days in the year. Following Oct 8 was Nov. 26 (10.1 percent discount), Dec. 31 (9.7 percent discount), Oct. 22 (9.6 percent discount), and Oct. 15 (9.1 percent discount).

And the worst day of the year to close on a purchase of a home was Jan. 19, when buyers paid an average 9.6 percent premium above estimated market value at time of sale, followed by Feb. 16 (9.5 percent premium), Apr. 20 (9.5 percent premium), Apr. 6 (8.4 percent premium), and Apr. 27 (8.2 percent premium).

Related Articles from DIYORNOT.COM:

Timeline for Buying a House

Life Expectancy of Major Home Appliances

Planning a Yard Sale

Moving – a Major Life Event

 

 

Categories
Buying a House selling a house

Best Time to Buy or Sell a House

When is the best time of year to buy a home? RealtyTrac took a big data approach to this question, analyzing 32 million single family home and condo sales over the past 15 years. The real estate information company and online marketplace for foreclosed and defaulted U. S. properties, compared average sale prices to average estimated market value at the time of sale to determine whether buyers paid a premium or bought at a discount.

Based on the closing date of the sale, they broke down the data by month, weekday and day of the year to identify when buyers historically have realized the biggest discounts. Below are high-level details.
The best month to close on a purchase of a home is October. Out of 2.7 million single family home and condo sales over the last 15 years that closed in October, buyers realized an average discount of 2.6 percent below full estimated market value at the time of sale.

Following October as best months to buy were February, July, December and January – all fall or winter months except for July, which was a surprise given that conventional wisdom would suggest that is a good time to sell but not necessarily to buy at a bargain price.

The worst month of the year to close on the purchase of a home is April, when buyers over the last 15 years have purchased at an average premium of 1.2 percent above estimated market value at the time of sale.

The best day of the year to close on a purchase was Oct. 8 when buyers realized the biggest average discount – 10.8 percent below estimated market value at time of sale – among any of the remaining 356 days in the year. Following Oct 8 was Nov. 26 (10.1 percent discount), Dec. 31 (9.7 percent discount), Oct. 22 (9.6 percent discount), and Oct. 15 (9.1 percent discount).

And the worst day of the year to close on a purchase of a home was Jan. 19, when buyers paid an average 9.6 percent premium above estimated market value at time of sale, followed by Feb. 16 (9.5 percent premium), Apr. 20 (9.5 percent premium), Apr. 6 (8.4 percent premium), and Apr. 27 (8.2 percent premium).

www.realtytrac.com

Gene and Katie Hamilton
www.diyornot.com
Categories
Buying a House Real Estate

Timeline for Buying a House

Gene and Katie Hamilton

Here’s an overview of what’s involved and things to consider before making such a large commitment and investment. Owning a home is money-dependent meaning the amount of money you have in the bank or investments for a down payment, and your monthly income to pay for mortgage payments and expenses. Talk to bankers, realtors and mortgage loan officers and use online calculators to learn the options you may have. When you have your finances in order get a preapproved mortgage so you know what you can spend on a house including the expenses.

You can learn a lot at real estate listing sites like Trulia and Zillow about prices, square footage, taxes, comparable property and value and see pictures of the house inside and out. But until you drive through a neighborhood and see it firsthand you can’t get a feel for it. Check out the school district (for kids), public transportation for proximity to work, and notice the condition of neighboring houses.

When you find a house you want submit a reasonable offer through the realtor and hope it’s accepted. A buyer’s market usually means there’s an oversupply of houses for sale and you have leverage to negotiate a price; but a seller’s market put them in a position to hold out for their price. When they can many buyers wait to buy when it’s to their advantage, not the seller’s.

When a buyer’s offer is accepted and the transaction is under contract three things happen. There a lot of paper work as the process winds down and it can be stressful when forms are misfiled or lost and scheduling can be an issue, but when you’re handed the keys to your new home it’s the beginning of a new adventure of owning a home.

For information about the cost of home improvements visit www.diyornot.com and compare the cost of hiring a contractor with doing the job yourself.

Categories
Buying a House remodeling

Remodeling? Consider Key Features in 2014 New Homes

Gene and Katie Hamilton
Gene and Katie Hamilton
Quick Video YouTube_Small
Cost to Paint Kitchen Cabinets

If you’re pondering a major remodeling project for your home it’s a good idea to take a look at the key features being built into new single family homes. According to the National Assn. of Home Builders the features most important to new home buyers in 2014 are not startling or new ideas, just practical and functional features that make living in a home comfortable and convenient. They include a walk-in closet in the master bedroom, low-e windows, a laundry room and a great room.
These top priorities have been a part of the mix for several years, but increasingly energy efficiency – in the construction of windows, appliances and heating and cooling units – are important to home buyers. The realization that saving energy dollars now and in the future makes the Energy Star rating an important factor for home buyers.
To compare the cost of doing it yourself with hiring a contractor for hundreds of improvement projects, visit us at www.diyornot.com.

 

Categories
Buying a House

Buyer Beware Signs Buying a House


When you’re looking at a house to buy it’s easy to be enamored by its location on a leafy street or the new kitchen cabinets and stylish decorating. But before you make an offer and pay an inspector to do a thorough inspection, do a little investigating yourself. Take a walk through looking for telltale indications of a not-so-perfect house. You may end up buying the house but you’ll have a more realistic idea of its good and bad points and can negotiate the price accordingly.

Keep a notebook or PDA handy to record what you find, a cell phone or camera for taking pictures and a flashlight to see into tight spaces.

Walk around the exterior of the house looking at the roof for missing or curled shingles. A pair of binoculars helps. Look for rust around the flashing and roof vent.

Look at the siding to see if it’s damaged or loose. Look for signs of mildew which are usually found on the north side of the house.

Check out the system of gutters and downspouts. If it’s a one story house you can usually stand at an angle to see if the gutters are clean or filled with an accumulation of leaves or debris. If it happens to be raining you’re in luck because you can see if there are any leaks and if the rainwater flows through the downspouts. At the base of downspouts there should be a diverter or splash block for runoff that carries the water away from the foundation of the house.

Next, go to the basement looking for signs water stains on the walls and floor. Also look on the wall and foundation for cracks and termite tunnels. A trail of them indicates they’re there or have been there and should be eradicated.

Look at the furnace for its last service date and hopefully it’s recent indicating it’s been maintained. Rust at the bottom of the furnace is a telltale of possible water damage.

Go up to the attic and crawl around if you have to looking on the underside of the roof sheathing for stains.

This isn’t a complete list of what a certified inspector will look for but it should give you some initial background into how the systems of the house have been maintained, an important thing to know if you’re considering being its owner.

We hope you’ll visit us at www.diyornot.com and www.m.diyornot.com when you’re looking for the cost of home improvement projects.