New Luxury Homes for Sale – Steps to Acquiring Your Dream Home

New luxury homes for sale may not be for everyone, but many people continue to strive for more spacious and more lavish homes. Not even the economic recession stopped homebuyers from wanting to go big. This is why there are many new luxury home builders offering roomy custom-built homes for competitive prices.

The definition of luxury real estate is changing. Back in the day, a luxury home or real estate is a property priced at the upper 5-10% of the real estate market. This may be true today, as not everyone can afford deluxe cottages and extravagant mansions that new luxury home builders create. These builders simply extended their services to accommodate the growing demand for bigger homes. Today, they offer to build quality custom single-family homes and townhomes as well.

New luxury homes for sale are perfect for those who can afford it because you will be getting only the highest quality. Most luxury home builders have their own in-house architect that design energy-efficient yet still comfortable houses. They also offer extensive warranty for each property they build. They will conduct repairs for free during the first year, fix mechanical systems such as electrical wiring and plumbing the next, and offer warranty for structural elements by the tenth year.

New luxury home builders follow a strict process when offering their services to homebuyers. Familiarize yourself with some of the basic steps to acquiring your own lavish property.

Selection and Financing. The first step to finding any home is shopping around for builders and their designs. You will choose your own site and floor plan at the beginning. Their in-house architects will then ask about the customizations you want. You will then discuss financing options. Many builders offer their own in-house mortgage, making their company a one-stop shop for homebuyers.

Pre-construction Planning. Your builder will assign a project manager who will guide you through the entire process. Together, you will create a schedule and set different milestones. You will use these milestones later on to gauge whether or not the construction is going on time. They will ask you to review your selections one final time before beginning the building process. Part of the pre-construction planning is taking you to the site. They will explain your layout and give you an initial idea of how big your luxury house will be.

Pre-Drywall Inspection. You will not have to be there for the inspections the law requires, but builders will ask you to inspect the framing before they install the drywall and any mechanical systems. You will see the quality of construction and get a feel of your home for the first time. Visiting the site at this stage of construction lets you adjust the design and make changes easily.

Pre-Settlement Walkthrough and Delivery. The next time you will see your home is when it is complete. Your project manager will familiarize you on the features of your new home, as well as address any questions and issues you may raise. You can move into your new home after the closing process with your contractors.

Post-settlement reviews. Respected home builders will not stop their service after they finish building your new abode. They will visit after a specific period of time has passed and check how you are settling in. You can ask them any questions regarding your home’s construction and features, which they will address promptly.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

So Many Condos for Sale! Tips for Choosing The Right Place to Call Home

Many people are deciding to downsize on their homes today, whether the kids have gone off to college and retirement is coming soon, or they are young professionals not ready to invest in a large home. For these reasons, condominium living has become more popular in recent years. Urban areas as well as casual resort and more rural settings have condos for sale that appeal to just about any taste. These types of lodging are popping up in unexpected places today. They are no longer relegated to the high-rise resorts on the ocean as they were in the mid ’80s. Old warehouses and factories are being converted to provide living spaces, and cities are expanding out into what were once rural areas to allow for multi-family dwellings with a country, natural feel. With this vast array of types of condos for sale, it can be difficult to choose which is right for you. Here are some tips to help you out as you venture into condominium living.

– Like with all home buying, get prequalified for a mortgage first. Find out how much you can afford and what financing options are available to you.

– Select a realtor to help you out on your search. Their services are free, and they can offer you their expertise and knowledge of the area.

– Hire a law firm to help you out with paperwork for closing and legal advice for home buying.

– Have the realtor show you a variety of condos for sale: high-rises, flats, and lodgings with or without amenities like swimming, tennis, doormen, or workout areas.

– Plan to buy the largest space you can afford. Studios and one-bedrooms are difficult to resell, unless you’re in an area near college or university campuses.

– Visit the area at different times of day to gauge traffic, both pedestrian and vehicle, and to find out what the noise level is like.

– Choose a unit with the best view. This makes for easier resale, too. Be sure to pay attention to incoming sunshine, however: a great, sunny view can also mean higher air conditioning costs in summer.

– Check out the parking space situation and be sure there is plenty available for tenants and guests.

– Consider storage options by thinking about how much closet space you’ll need. Most complexes offer some type of on-site garages or storage areas. If not, you may need to incorporate a little extra cost to your mortgage calculation for monthly off-site storage fees.

– Don’t forget to check out evacuation routes in case of emergencies. Be sure to have an inspection performed by a certified building inspector prior to purchasing.

– Talk to neighbors and find out what they like best or what they may not enjoy about living in the complex. Ask around about pet policies and other details that might not have been advertised or explained by your realtor.

With these simple tips in mind and a great idea of exactly what it is you’re looking for in your new home, you can find condos for sale to suit almost any need. It’s a great way to live maintenance-free and in a smaller home when you don’t want or need a lot of space or furniture.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

Real Estate Agents – Strengths and Weaknesses in Listing Commercial Property Today

In this commercial property market there are some real pressures and challenges that confront a lot of property owners when they want to sell or lease their property. They need the help of top agents that really understand the local area, to help in moving the property.

Contrary to popular belief, it is in markets like this that good agents can make a lot of commission. It all comes down to the way in which they package their services and help their clients.

In simple terms, top agents and experienced agents can do very well today providing they work the local area and their database. A good database will always get you through any market conditions and frustrations. In saying, that I am a big believer that a salesperson’s database should not be delegated to the office administrative staff to control.

Every salesperson should take ownership of their database; in this way they will get good activities from it. In this market you need leads that you can do something with. When a database is passed over to the administrative staff to control, the inevitable result is inaccurate and old data. The database soon becomes redundant. The salesperson doesn’t keep it up to date.

Become Change Agents

So we are the ‚agents of change‘ when it comes to helping our property clients an owners get results in this market. We should know how to attract the right people to every property listing that we take on. Exclusive listings are more important in today than ever before. Some top agents will not take on ‚open listings‘ for the very reason that they are a waste of time and effort.

When you know the drawbacks of the industry and the listings today, you can offer the clients that you serve some solid solutions. So what are the drawbacks? Here is a list of some of the bigger ones:

  1. The time that it takes to sell or lease a property can be longer today. Every client has to be conditioned for the best price or rent so the time on market is not lengthened. The first few weeks of every marketing effort are the most important. Position the property correctly to get the best enquiry in this time.
  2. High prices and high rents will achieve nothing. The price or rent for the property should be optimised for enquiry. You have to do more with less when it comes to marketing and inspecting of properties.
  3. A larger number of competing properties can frustrate your marketing efforts and time on market. Check out these properties before you do anything with your listing.
  4. Buyers and tenants are slower to enquire, inspect the property, and then make a decision. Your skills with each stage of the listing should be optimised. Hone your skills accordingly.
  5. Limited finance can put some ‚brakes‘ on the larger deals. Find out where your prospects can get finance from and what the criteria of approval may be.

Whilst these may be drawbacks in the market, they are also opportunities for agents that can get focused and organised. Every problem is an opportunity in disguise.

Are you a solution provider in this commercial real estate market? Top agents are just that. You can be too.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

There Are Many Options When Looking For Cheap Houses For Sale

When you are searching for a home to buy, especially if it is your first, budget is a major consideration. You will need to come up with earnest money, a down payment, and closing costs. Looking at homes in older neighborhoods or a more modest area of town is more likely to produce a number of cheap houses for sale. This will provide you with more choices. You could also consider buying a home with a rental property attached, or even a mobile home for greater affordability.

One possibility is to buy a very old home in need of tender loving care and customize it to suit your needs and taste. The charm and coziness of an older style home can be very appealing, and the romantic notion of renovating is also a draw for a do-it-yourselfer. Of course if it needs a good deal of work, the cost can defeat the purpose of finding an inexpensive house. You are likely to need new carpet and paint in any home you purchase that is not new, but an old fixer-upper could easily become a money pit if you’re not careful.

Another choice when looking for cheap houses for sale, is to try to find a home which has a rentable apartment attached, such as a little duplex where you could live in one half and rent the other to help make your monthly mortgage payment. The cost of this type of home might be a little higher than what you have in mind initially, but could potentially have a big payoff on the other end as your income property pays the lion’s share of the mortgage payment.

If you are looking for cheap houses for sale, don’t discount the value of manufactured housing. These mobile homes, as they are also called, give you more bang for your buck in many ways than traditional housing. Because these are constructed assembly-line style in a factory setting and moved to the site, the labor cost and materials are much lower. This savings is passed on to the consumer, who then has an option on a very affordable home. And to save even more money, look for a previously owned mobile home, which has already seen the bulk of its depreciation. These homes can be as roomy and comfortable as traditional housing at a 30 to 40 percent savings for the same square footage.

Arm yourself with tools such as the classifieds, your telephone, and a map of the city and begin your search–a little research and effort will find you no shortage of cheap houses for sale to choose from.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

How Soon Can You Be Evicted After The Foreclosure Sheriff Sale?

Homeowners in foreclosure are rightfully worried about not being able to save their homes and how quickly they will be evicted after the sheriff sale. Although the lender and various „experts“ will threaten them with the sheriff showing up the next day to violently kick them out of the house, this is just not the case in foreclosure situation. The county sheriff and the eviction crew will not show up the next day after the sheriff sale, and homeowners should ignore the fear-mongering that threatens this possibility.

Owners should be aware of the implications of the foreclosure auction, though. The sheriff sale will transfer ownership of the property, and the foreclosure victims will not own the house after this point. But this does not mean that the eviction process will happen automatically right after the house is auctioned, as there are more steps that will need to be taken by the new owner.

The high bidder at the auction will most likely have to have the sheriff sale confirmed (this is not a specifically detailed step in every state). This can take from a few days to a couple of weeks after the auction, depending on how quickly the courts and new owner act. But this is generally just a simple step in the foreclosure process after the sale that involves the sheriff and judge confirming the auction was for a legal amount and that the deed has now been awarded to the new owner.

The new owner will most likely be the original foreclosing bank that the homeowners had been dealing with in the first place to stop foreclosure. About 95% of foreclosures end up being purchased by the lender, rather than a third party.

In order to evict former homeowners, the lender will have to request the court grant it possession of the property and order the county sheriff to evict any remaining people or personal items and change the locks. This is a legal process, though. Homeowners should not fear that a bunch of government thugs with badges and guns will show up at their house the day after the sheriff sale to kick them out. Of course, this is exactly what happens, but at a later date if the foreclosure victims do not move out in time.

But the entire eviction process can take up to a month after the sale; throwing people out of their homes is not a simple process before or after a county auction. The court will have no problem ordering the eviction (unless the former owners go and try to contest the sale, eviction order, etc.), but the sheriff’s department will have to give notice of the impending removal. This can be as little as posting a piece of paper on the property with three days notice to move. Thus, after the sheriff sale, former homeowners better be prepared to leave on their own or work out another solution.

People facing foreclosure should not be overly concerned about being kicked out of a house with little notice. The sheriff will not just show up the next day or a few hours after the sheriff sale, as there is still a legal process that must be followed for a bank to take back possession of a foreclosed property. Homeowners probably have at least two weeks to a month after the sheriff sale date to arrange for a new place to move into.

In any event, homeowners are always encouraged to call the sheriff’s department to ask them when then eviction will take place. Even more promising, they can also usually ask for a few extra days or a week in order to move everything out and give up the house peacefully. There is still a chance to negotiate with the local government for more time (courts and sheriff) so that the former owners are not taken by surprise by the eviction.

Thus, the banks and government officials will not evict foreclosure victims right away after the auction, but there is no time to spare, either. Having a couple of weeks to move out can give people a chance to find a place and move in at their own pace, but even a month-long eviction process will go by very quickly. If in doubt, homeowners should contact their local government officials and ask about the eviction — the courts or sheriff will be able to inform them of the date and try to work out the most reasonable solution. They want as little trouble after foreclosure as the former homeowners do.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

How to Find Real Estate Buyers by the Dozen

Buyers are out there, it’s just a matter of rounding them up and keeping in touch. It helps to be able to determine which type of buyer you are hunting for from the start. Remember this: you’re the person who has something they want when a buyer calls you; if you are calling them then you are trying to sell them, let’s insure buyers call you so you remain in the position of power from the start. You should Be a Real Estate Heavy Weight.

Let’s look at a few categories of typical buyers to get some perspective on their mindsets and how and when we’ll market to find them in order to supply their real estate buying needs.

o Rehabbers: These are folks looking to fix and flip property for quick turn profits.

o Landlords: These are folks looking to buy to rent out to others for long-term equity accrual while generating a positive cash-flow every month.

o Wholesaler’s: Will either buy or put an option on your contract to hopefully flip the paper to another buyer who is willing to pay more.

o Lease Option end-buyers: These are folks who can’t qualify for a loan of their own but want to be home owners as opposed to renters again.

o Retail Buyers: These are end buyers who can obtain a mortgage or have cash and generally buy the property for their own housing needs.

There are variations of buyers out there but the above 4 types are generally considered the prime targets of people who have property to sell. Understanding each buyer’s mindset helps you to market to those buyers interests, do they want quick cash, long-term wealth, tax deductions, a place to call home etc… If you ask enough general questions you’ll quickly discern which type of buyer you have at hand. Once you know, you can then tailor your offers and present properties that satisfy what is important to them.

Buyer: Someone who is ready, willing and qualified! Those that aren’t qualified may be perfect tenants, lease option buyers or owner finance candidates, so qualified can have different meanings.

Ready: Someone who is in the market to buy within 1-45 days, keep in mind a retail or lease option end-buyer generally buys once and they’re out of the game, landlords, rehabbers and wholesaler’s are more likely to buy multiple properties from you over time as they accumulate, sell or flip existing assets. Having active buyer’s lists in different categories that are often ready to buy property is a very smart way to operate.

Gee Danno, how do I find these people? Ah! I’m so glad you asked! Let’s start out with one of the all time greatest methods to kick-start your building a buyers list. In your search for bargain priced properties of your own, it makes sense that you will eventually find a very good deal, once you have a superior deal to offer you turn around and market that property at cost! Yep, no profit for you on this one. Why? Because you are going to advertise that property to every investor and potential property buyer on the planet!

The reason for this is that you will get the most calls and response when you advertise a screaming deal! Granted you’ll most likely sell that deal relatively quickly but you’ll be gathering information from each potential buyer who calls to build your buyers list for future properties that you offer. If you don’t have a property of your own to sell, ask someone who does! I can assure you that they aren’t going to turn down your offer to advertise their property for them for free! You might negotiate a small fee if in fact you do sell their property but your main objective is to build you buyers list!

Let me give you an example of one way to collect potential buyers by the dozen, hold an auction, advertise for a solid week in advance so you attract the most amount of buyers, begin with bandit signs, placing about 100 of them around a 5 square mile area of the property, we just did this and had 800 calls because it was a great deal of those 800 calls we had 300 people show up on auction day, of course the home sold but we also added new buyers to our buyers list.

Here are ways to advertise for those buyers:

o Bandit Signs

o CraigsList

o Backpage

o GoogleBase

o Postlets

o Zillow

o Pay Per Click Ads

o Local online Classifieds

o Media Website

o Flyers

o Newspaper/inserts

o REIA’s

o Direct mail/post cards

o Start an investors MeetUp group

o Email

o Phone

o Fax

o Your own website

Use your imagination, the list is limitless, there is a free e-book called the Internet Real Estate Yellow Pages that you can download for free at my site MagicBullets.com go grab that and you’ll find 100 more ideas and places to list your deals. Now go Be A Real Estate Heavyweight!

Dan Auito :~)

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

Tips To Help You Buy Furniture For Your Home

Furniture is on the list of essential items for any office or home. You don’t have to buy a car as you can travel without one. But you cannot manage without an office or home furniture. Although it may seem easy to buy furniture, you have to consider a few important factors before making this choice. So, if you want to upgrade your home decor or you are going to move to a new house, we suggest that you buy new furniture. In this article, we are going to share with you a few tips to help you purchase new furniture for your home.

Get the Measurements

First of all, you should get the proper measurements. If the furniture you have purchased does not fit well, you will find no use in it. These numbers will give you a pretty good idea of the type of furniture that will fit properly. Therefore, you may want to save yourself from all the trouble and purchase your desired furniture based on the correct measurements.

Consider the Color of the Walls

Before you purchase furniture for your rooms, don’t forget to take into account the wall color. If you don’t want to make things look clumsy, make sure that the furniture you have purchased contrasts with the wall color.

So, what you need to do is study and analyze the colors unless you have plans to paint your interior walls after purchasing the furniture.

Don’t go for Silly Offers

Today, you may find that a lot of companies making offers on office and home furniture. Although you can save a lot of money by opting for these offers, it is not worth it. The reason is that these furniture articles are not high quality. Good quality stuff does not come cheap.

In other words, you don’t want to invest in sub-standard furniture or furniture that has some type of defects. So, if an offer looks too good to be true, you should avoid it.

Set your Budget

Before you purchase fresh furniture, make sure you have a budget figure in your mind. It is better that you don’t compromise on the quality aspect. Once you have set your budget, you should stick to it. However, it is a great idea to keep your budget a little bit flexible. Factors that you cannot compromise on include the quality, longevity, design, and durability of your furniture.

Consider your Lifestyle

Depending upon your lifestyle, you should choose the best furniture. So, what you need to do is consider your needs, purpose, and the uses of the furniture before you place your order. This will give you a clear idea of what you should go for. In other words, the furniture you are going to purchase should meet your lifestyle.

Long story short, if you are going to buy home furniture for the first time, we suggest that you consider the tips given in this article. This will help you make it easier to purchase the best furniture.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

How to Buy Belize Real Estate

Belize is a great place for property investment, with no capital gains tax to pay on any profits you make, and property prices increasing year on year. If you’re interested in buying a piece of land or a property in this beautiful country, there are some hoops you’ll need to jump through, as well as some regulations and costs that you should be aware of. But, overall, the process is reassuringly simple.

Here are the main aspects of buying real estate in Belize that you’ll want to consider.

What is the cost of property in Belize?

Property prices vary in Belize. You’ll notice that modern apartment developments can cost the same as something similar in the States, whereas buying up plots of land can yield a bargain. Property on the waterfront and in areas that are popular with tourists will usually make for the best investment and are likely to rent out quickly if you decide to go that route.

How can I find a property in Belize?

When you’re looking for property, it’s easy to be swept up in the excitement of a prospective new home or investment. But be sure to check the credentials of your real estate agent. They are probably legit, but it’s better to be safe than sorry, because – like everywhere – there are scammers operating.

The best ways to search for your dream property are:

– Check with reputable real estate agents about properties they currently have available.

– Use online property sites.

– Ask around – word of mouth can be a great way to learn about properties that are on the market.

Although you don’t need to be in Belize to close on a property, it’s recommended that you view it at least once before proceeding with the purchase.

What are the legal considerations of buying property in Belize?

There’s plenty of great news about buying property in Belize, and these are some of the reasons why Belize property is so popular with ex-pats.

For instance:

– As a foreigner, you’ll have the same rights to own property as a native Belizean.

– Purchasing property doesn’t require any complicated additional steps – it’s just as easy as buying property in the States.

– The documentation will all be in English because that’s Belize’s primary language.

– The land tax is only 1-1.5% of the property’s value, a bargain compared to many other countries.

However, you should make sure, before you complete the purchase of any property, that you:

– Budget for the Government Land Transfer Tax of 5% to 8% of the property’s value.

– Check that the person selling the property is the legal owner – otherwise, this can cause big problems down the line.

– Check the regulations on the development of any land you intend to purchase because Belize has very strict environmental laws.

– Pay for a property title check, to make sure there aren’t any legal disputes attached to it. This shouldn’t cost any more than USD$250.

– If you’re purchasing a condo, it will be subject to strata titling principles. This gives each unit a freehold title, which is purchased along with the condo.

– Although it will cost extra dollars, do use an accredited attorney and real estate agent to process your transaction, as they will be able to check all the documentation is legally watertight.

How long does it take to purchase property in Belize?

Once you’ve found your property and have instructed an attorney and real estate agent, the purchasing process shouldn’t take too long. Usually, 30 to 90 days is a good ballpark estimate.

And then – the job is done – welcome to property ownership in Belize!

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

Austin Energy is Building a Greener Tomorrow

Taking advantage of Austin Energy’s incentives for energy efficient homes and businesses makes good financial sense. Rebates and loans are available to help Austin residents make environmentally friendly choices. In some cases, low and moderate income customers of Austin Energy can even receive free home improvements, even if they rent their homes rather than own them. By participating in one of a variety of incentive programs, homeowners can reduce their energy costs and save money while helping to keep Austin green.

Austin Energy has a longstanding and demonstrated commitment to saving energy and environmental responsibility. As a result, Austin Energy has partnered with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Energy to offer Energy Star rebates to qualified customers. These rebates, available on purchases of high-efficiency air conditioning and electric water heater systems, solar photovoltaic systems, solar-powered water heating systems, as well as certain energy-saving home improvements, are intended to promote the use of green technology and alternative energy sources.

The efficiency of air conditioning systems is measured by two different systems. The Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (SEER) provides a measure of a specific unit’s energy efficiency over the entire cooling season, and as such is a more general assessment. The Energy Efficiency Ration (EER) measures the unit’s efficiency under prolonged and constant use, as in the hottest days of summer. Austin Energy offers rebates for the purchase of new air conditioning models that achieve a SEER rating of 14 or higher and an EER rating of 11.5 or higher; some window air conditioners also qualify for these rebates. Split system air conditioners and heat pumps may also qualify if they meet these SEER and EER rating requirements. Rebates range from $50 for small window units to $650 for the most highly rated energy efficient air conditioning systems.

Solar photovoltaic technology rebates work differently than appliance rebates. Since these solar panels actually generate electricity, Austin Energy offers low-cost, no-fee loans for the purchase and installation of solar photovoltaic systems, and then gives a rebate per watt to its customers for energy returned to the electrical grid. This makes solar energy an affordable and financially sensible alternative for private homes. Photovoltaic cells create energy without polluting the environment, so they are a sound environmental choice as well.

Solar water heaters also qualify for rebates from Austin Energy ranging from $1,500 for new construction to $2,000 for installation in an existing home. These technologically-advanced water heaters also qualify for a tax rebate of as much as $1,000. Solar water heater systems must be certified by the Solar Rating Certification Corporation in order to qualify for these incentives.

To help customers decrease their energy consumption, Austin Energy also offers rebates for certain home improvements, such as adding insulation to attic spaces, air duct repair, adding caulking and weather stripping to windows and doors, and radiant barrier insulation. Low-income families can qualify to receive these energy-saving improvements free of charge as part of Austin Energy’s Power Saver Program. In order to qualify, you must meet certain income guidelines, the home to be improved must be a single-family residence, and in most cases the house cannot be valued at over $150,000. Renters who have lived in the residence for at least three months can also qualify if the landlord consents to the improvements.

Other Austin Energy programs include the Power Partners program, which gives customers a free programmable thermostat in return for allowing Austin Energy to cycle electric power usage during peak consumption periods; the Refrigerator Recycling program, and other incentives to save energy. But perhaps the most important incentives are the environmental benefits of these programs. Together with Austin residents, Austin Energy is looking to the future and working to build a greener tomorrow. 

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

6 Tips for Home Buying Right Now

1. Get pre-approved for a loan.

Most sellers require a pre-approval letter along with your written offer. You should have it ready to go so that when you find the right home there is no delay getting your offer submitted. There’s a lot of confusion about pre-approved vs. pre-qualified… even Realtors sometimes use the terms interchangeably! But the pre-approval is the real deal. With a pre-approval, the lender has run your credit, and you will usually have filled out a loan application and provided documentation to the lender, who will then tell you the amount for which you are approved. With the pre-qualification, you will typically have provided some information verbally to the lender about your credit, income and assets, and the lender will give you a ballpark amount for which you are likely to be approved. Sometimes a pre-qualification letter will be sufficient; the main thing is to talk to a lender before you start looking at homes.

2. Decide if short sales and bank-owned properties are for you.

Don’t waste your time looking at properties that don’t meet your home-buying needs. Each of these types of sales has its own challenges for the home buyer, so it is important to know the basics of each and decide if either one fits in with your game plan. For example, if you need to get into a new home within a fairly short time frame, a short sale may not work for you, as they frequently take many months to complete. And bank-owned properties are often in need of work, which can add to the overall cost, or make it difficult to get certain types of loans. If you can be patient with a short sale, or have the ability and/or resources to fix up a bank-owned home, these could be excellent avenues to explore. If not, tell your Realtor® to skip the short sales and bank-owned houses.

3. Check out neighborhoods ahead of time.

One of the best things you can do at the start of your home-buying project is to take a weekend or two and cruise around various areas and subdivisions, especially if you are new to the area. Tell your Realtor which neighborhoods hold the greatest appeal for you – it will really help her understand the type of home you want and your taste in houses. Some buyers are looking for newer homes in areas with lots of families and kids; others prefer the quieter, „mature“ neighborhoods. Fortunately, there’s something out there for everyone, and a real estate agent who has plenty of local area expertise and knowledge will be a huge help in finding those neighborhoods that are hidden gems.

4. Make time for house-hunting.

Don’t plan to only go to showings on the weekend – in this market that’s not a winning strategy. There is actually a shortage of well-priced homes in good condition, and the ones that are also in a desirable location sell almost immediately. If you’re serious about finding your dream home, clear the decks and be ready to jump when your Realtor tells you a new listing just hit the market that fits your requirements. And more importantly – be ready to make an offer if it is the right house. It could easily be gone in a day or two.

5. Don’t waste time on houses that are already sold!

Do you spend your spare time house-hunting on Zillow, Realtor.com or Trulia? Or driving around and calling about houses with signs out front? Then you’ve probably already learned that a huge number of those homes – which appear to be for sale – are not really available. They are very often „under contract“ which simply means that another buyer made an offer that was accepted by the seller. These often still show as available on the public real estate websites, but in most cases the sale will close in a few weeks. Work with a Realtor® who will set up a custom search for you so you can focus on just those homes that meet your criteria and are actually still available.

6. And of course, the most important thing is to find a really professional and client-oriented Realtor!

A great agent will make your home buying experience smoother and more enjoyable. Get referrals from friends or family who’ve recently had a good home-buying experience, or call or email a few local agents. See which ones are responsive and return your call or email right away, and get a feel for how professional and knowledgeable they are about the local area and current market conditions. Also check out their commitment to their clients in terms of training above and beyond that needed to get a real estate license. Realtors® who work diligently on behalf of their clients have often invested in advanced training and designations such as:

  • GRI – Graduate Realtor Institute, only 19% of Realtors®
  • ABR – Accredited Buyer Representative, only 15% of Realtors®
  • CRS – Certified Residential Specialist, only 10% of Realtors®

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We hope these tips are helpful, and wish you success in your house-hunting!

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

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