Category Archives: Real Estate

Choosing the right Real Estate Agent

Buying a house isn’t a task to be taken lightly. The house you decide to live in and its location have an enormous effect on your life. Your house does more than protect you from the elements; it’s where you raise a family and go to relax after a long day’s work. Whether you’re a first-time home buyer or have lived in several houses, it’s daunting to search the housing market to find a home for your family.

Buying a house through a real estate agent offers many benefits that make the process simpler. It’s a realtor’s job to know about the houses available on the market. If your family needs a room for every kid, a pool, or a small yard, realtors can find houses that meet your wants and needs. Finding that right house for your family is largely dependent on hiring the right real estate agent.

Where ever you’re looking for a home, the area is bound to have multiple real estate companies each with several agents. Finding the right agent to work with can be trickier than you think. The first thing to look for in an agent is whether or not they are a realtor. The difference between realtors and real estate agents is that the former is licensed through the National Association of Realtors. Realtor licensing requires additional professional and ethical training. Not to say that all realtors are better than real estate agents, but it’s a first step in finding the right one.

Whether you go with a real estate agent or realtor, be sure to check the validity of their license. The status of a license can be verified online through a state’s Bureau of Real Estate. In addition to checking that a license is valid, you can find out if the agent has complaints against them or if they’ve received awards.

Once you’ve found potential agents, give them a call. Interviewing real estate agents is the only way to come to your own decision. You might ask questions about how long they’ve been in business, the type of homes they work with, and how they prefer to communicate. With a bit of research, you can find a real estate agent who works hard rather than one that’s hard to work with. Finding an agent who is honest and dedicated to your needs is the first step in buying the right family home.

6 Pitfalls Of Hiring Your Own Removal Truck

6 Pitfalls Of Hiring Your Own Removal Truck

Most people want to save as much money as they can during the moving process and are tempted to hire their own moving truck.

However, while the DIY removal route might seem like a cheaper option on paper, there are many pitfalls that come with moving on your own.

Before you decide whether to use a professional Brisbane removalist service or pack your own truck, consider these common pitfalls that come with the self-moving trend.

You’ll need money on a credit card for a deposit: If you’re strapped for cash, hiring a truck is not going to be inexpensive in the short-term. Most truck hire companies require anything from a $200 to $500 deposit paid before you pick the vehicle up, and you’ll usually need to pay this with a credit card owned by the designated driver.

There are rigid hire time requirements: Moving trucks are usually only available for 24 hour hire periods – not the half or quarter day increments that professionals offer. If you’re super organised this won’t necessarily be a problem, but don’t expect to return your truck half an hour late without having to pay for an entire extra day.

Vehicle inspections waste valuable time: You know you’re going to be busy from the moment you wake up until the moment you go to bed on moving day. But, most people don’t factor in the time needed to properly inspect a removal vehicle and fill out the condition report before and after their move. Online reviews of truck hire companies are littered with cautionary tales of time-poor movers who rushed this process, didn’t notice a defect in their hire vehicle, and were then stung for repair costs later on.

It’s hard to collect your truck without help: Even if you’re confident that you can pack and move all of your possessions by yourself, a major roadblock that solo movers often don’t consider is the logistics of picking up their hire truck. Many hire places do not have anywhere for you to park your vehicle for the day while using your hire truck, so you’ll need to get a friend to drop you off or to hire a taxi on the day.

Don’t expect accessories to be included: Few truck hire companies include removalist trolleys, blankets and ropes in their standard packages. While these items can usually be rented, you’ll often find that the cost of hiring these essentials can come close to the cost of buying them new.

Your possessions aren’t insured: Everyone knows that when you rent a car you have to purchase basic insurance. But when you insure your hire truck you’re only covering the truck, not any of your possessions inside. Unlike professional movers who offer break-free guarantees, when you move goods yourself you have no safety net for potential damages.

Tips on Buying and Selling Residential Properties

Home buying and selling can be a very fast-paced industry – a house can sell within hours or even minutes. With the right tools at your fingertips you will be able to outwit and win good deals.

If You’re Buying

If you are a buyer, then you will want to take these things into consideration.

Find a lender. Before you start working with a bank, mortgage banker, mortgage broker or credit union, get as much information about them as you can. Check their backgrounds carefully. Also, get an estimate of all possible fees.

Don’t over commit yourself. There are some things that you can take care of for the buyer, but others that you cannot. Learn to be flexible and to negotiate.

Stay within your financial reach. Make sure you never go for something that is so high or right around your income level, but rather something that is 25–30% lower than your income, so that if there is ever a draw back on your financial status you’ll still be able to afford it.

Get pre-approved. If you have problems getting pre-approved because of your bad credit rating, then one good thing to do is to get your own credit report online and review it. Determine if anything on the report is inaccurate or over seven years old, which means it must be removed.

Know what you’re looking for. Whether you are going to open houses on your own or using a real estate broker, make up a list of what you would most like to see in the property and prioritize it so you can determine which items are most important and which ones you are comfortable sacrificing.

Always keep a cool head. Simple problems can become a burden when you have many details to take care or you hit a few snags on the way to closing. Work with the people who are helping you through the transaction to resolve any issues that pop up.

If you’re selling

If you are on selling the side, here are some things you should be thinking of right now.

Know when to sell. Besides spring, the best time to put your property on the market if you plan on buying another home is when interest rates are low. Low rates benefit both buyers and sellers, and you’ll be both.

Understand the process. Learn about the home selling process and about negotiating. Knowing as much as you can could save you thousands of dollars.

Decide whether to go it alone. If you decide to sell your home on your own, keep in mind that it may take longer than if you’re using a real estate agent, especially in a buyers’ market. When there are more sellers than buyers, real estate agents have the advantage of using multiple listings when it comes to getting their homes in front of buyers.

Be realistic. About your asking price, the time it takes to sell a house, the process and the market. If you go in thinking it will take only a week and you’ll get exactly your asking price, you’ll probably be disappointed.

Think improvements. While you don’t necessarily have to add on a new room or two, making some basic improvements can increase the value of the property dramatically, and can also make a significant difference in the eyes of buyers. If the house needs a paint job, use neutral colors. The same with new carpeting. If there are hardwood floors, consider having them professionally refinished. Landscaping also adds curb appeal and increases the value of the property.

Price at market value. When you do, you open your home up to more buyers who can afford the price. Listing at a high price in the hope that you’ll find the one purchaser who will pay it, often discourages many potential purchasers who could have afforded the price. If you need to sell quickly, consider advertising owner financing to draw in a wider range of buyers.

Keeping these things in mind will surely help you sell at the right price and land on your dream home. Be real and you’ll have a much better experience.

Four Strategies to Buy Rentals With No Down Payment

Tips to Prepare for Moving

“Traveling is easy if you use a GPS or road map to reach your destination”. You should also organise before moving to keep your move well planned, easy, and less time consuming.

Here are some basic tips to prepare before moving:

Make a Moving To-Do List

You should be prepared one month before the move and plan accordingly. The moving to do list must include finding a local mover to unpack and organise at the new place.

Find top 5 local movers and packers

It’s good enough to search for 5 top leading movers in the location to get a free estimate. You can search the web or take reviews from people on the movers and their reputation.

Prefer moving companies that supply materials

Based on the quote estimate, make an agreement with a moving company that provides packing materials.

Prepare a Moving check-list

It’s important to have a printed check-list to categorise the things to move on preference. Get a list of all the items that should be packed by the movers and sort it. Mention the heavy items and outdoor items separately.

Organise utilities like TVs and Gas Connections

Make sure to disconnect your TV cable, gas connections and other similar utilities 2 weeks before the day you move.

Discover local resources

It is necessary to find local resources like supermarkets, water & cable services and other resources nearby the new place before the move. Find the necessary Organisations

Two to three weeks before the move, you must inform the organizations you are a part of, that you are moving. You also have to clear all dues with them.

Give Prior Membership Applications

Be ready a week before to fill out forms and applications for getting new residential, church memberships and more

Pack Your Essentials

You should pack valuable items like jewels and bank documents. Clear your wardrobe/closet of clothes and self pack them in bags. Its good not good to use cardboard boxes for this. Free your kitchen of perishable items

Clean your kitchen out of perishable items like soaked and frozen items and vegetables. On moving day, defrost your freezer for easy handling.

Get rid of garbage and unwanted things.

Avoid carrying unwanted things to the new place by donating or throwing them away.

Home Buyer Tips In a Sellers’ Market, How To Increase Your Odds

In a sellers’ market, its best for buyers to be educated about the specific area they would like to purchase. In a sellers’ market, sellers usually like to view as much offers as possible to maximize their profits thus creating a bidding war with buyers, much different from when the market is slow and considered a buyers’ market. Knowing how to present the offer or what to ask, will help you in finding the best property in a sellers’ market. Below are a few tips for buyers:

Ask how many offers seller currently has. If no offers have been submitted, that might indicate property is possibly overpriced or is fairly new on the market. It also lets you negotiate differently and perhaps getting a lower price.

Have your agent do comps in the area and submit with the offer. Sending comps with your offer shows sellers the reason for your offer price on their property. Sometimes sellers set their own price even if their agent provides them comps .

Send a full offer package, not an incomplete one. Since it is a sellers’ market and very competitive, do not send offers without proof of funds or approval letter. The offer will most probably be over looked decreasing your odds. You want to increase your odds of getting the property in a sellers’ market, not reasons why the offer should not be considered.

Do not ask for closing cost. Though many buyers need it or would just like to receive some funds for closing, in a sellers’ market, they will most likely move to an offer that is not requesting closing cost.

Offer as much as you are willing to pay. In a sellers’ market, there is not much time to negotiate on the property much like when it is a buyers’ market. Offering as much as you are willing to pay will increase your chances.

Close as quickly as possible. Some sellers’ are looking to close as quickly as possible due to job transfers or other personal reasons. Some buyers request a closing date 60 days from offer due to various reasons. If your offer looks good enough with a quicker closing, you increase the chances of getting offer accepted.

Communicate with the seller when viewing the property. Buyers should not speak with sellers about price when they go and view the property; the agent does this with the listing agent. A good conversation about the history of the home instead can influence the seller to take your offer. Sellers’ are attached to their homes and sometimes prefer selling their home to buyers who will take care of and love the home.

These are some great starter tip to help buyers in a sellers’ market. There are many more ways to increase odds of purchasing your dream home in a sellers’ market. Buyers should always understand that sellers’ always try to maximize their profits when the market is on their side. With great negotiating skills and some time, you can find the right home at the right price even in a sellers’ market.