Buying a home is a major investment that takes careful planning and financial consideration. That's why it's best to have a good idea of what you can afford before you get too deep into the house hunting process. Check out a mortgage calculator tool to get a ballpark idea of what you can afford, and consider talking to a lender about being pre-qualified for a home loan.
Not every renter decides to work with a real estate agent when pursuing rental properties, but having an agent working on your behalf can be enormously beneficial. Your real estate agent will help you find a great rental property that fits your needs, then assist in the lease negotiation process to ensure you get a fair deal.
As anyone who has lived through 2008 can attest, the housing market can fluctuate considerably year to year. That's why it's a great idea to keep tabs on your home's current market value—especially if you're looking to sell in the near future. We offer a competitive market analysis that will help you get a better idea of how much you can expect to sell your home for, how long it may take to sell, and the health of the market in your area, generally speaking.
Whether you're looking for your family's next home or searching for a retail space you can lease as an investment property, there are many factors to consider before purchasing real estate.
- Interest Rate—If you're financing any portion of the sale, the first thing to consider is the interest rate and terms of the loan.
- Down Payment—The amount you are able to put down on the purchase will help determine your monthly mortgage payments, as well as any private mortgage insurance you are required to pay.
- Taxes—Your home's property taxes will likely be paid through monthly contributions to your escrow account, which will be lumped in with your mortgage payment.
- Insurance—Like with property taxes, your home's annual insurance premium will be added to your monthly mortgage payment and paid through your escrow account.
- Closing Costs—Depending on your contract and the market in your area, buyers may be responsible for part or all of the closing costs—generally 2-5% of the purchase price.
- General Upkeep—No matter what kind of real estate you purchase, there will inevitably be maintenance or repairs needed at some point. Make sure you are able to save enough to cover those "rainy day" expenses.
- Property Management Fees—If you are planning on purchasing an investment property, you'll need to consider whether you will be managing the property yourself or enlisting in a property management service to handle advertising, inspections, tenant screening, etc.
With dozens of online real estate search engines out there, who needs a real estate agent, right? Wrong!
Real estate agents do more than help you find properties. Here's just a small list of the services we offer our clients:
- Find properties that match our clients' needs, sometimes before they even hit the market.
- Act as the middle man between buyers and sellers, helping to foster negotiations and reach an amicable agreement.
- Effectively market for-sale properties, so they sell as soon as possible for the best price.
- Schedule showings, giving buyers access to tour prospective homes.
- Stay educated on the latest trends in the housing and financial markets.
- Organize and file all legal paperwork necessary in a real estate transaction.
- Be your friend and advocate throughout the process of buying, selling, or renting real estate.