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Wednesday, November 16, 2016

What Happens During a Home Inspection?

Home inspections are extremely useful, but there are a few things about home inspections that every buyer needs to know.

If you are buying a home, there are a few important things that you should know about home inspections.

First of all, you can choose your home inspector. Your agent is not required to choose the inspector for you, although they can make a few recommendations. Whether you use an inspector your agent recommends or you find one on your own, make sure that the inspector is a member of the National Association of Home Inspectors.

Members of the NAHI must complete an approved home inspection training program. Remember, this is the biggest investment of your life; you don’t want to hire just anyone to do the inspection for you.

Home inspections are intended to point out adverse conditions, not cosmetic flaws. Your home inspector will pay attention to the structural integrity of the home, the HVAC system, the appliances, and more.

Hire an inspector who belongs to the National Association of Home Inspectors.

I recommend that you attend the home inspection. That way, you can follow the inspector throughout the property and learn which issues are important and which are not. Not every home is perfect, and an inspection on any home is bound to uncover some flaws. Your inspector will focus on things that need to be repaired.

At the end of the inspection, you will receive a report highlighting the issues your inspector noted. Your home inspector considers hundreds of items during an inspection. On the exterior of the home, they will look at the steps, the roof, the windows, and the doors. Inside the home, inspectors focus on the attic, electrical components, crawl spaces (if there are any), and the garage. They will also check on working items like faucets.

Finally, keep in mind that home inspectors work for the party who pays the fee. In most cases, the buyer pays for the home inspection. After all, you are the one who will assume ownership of the property, so it’s up to you to do your due diligence. It doesn’t matter if you are a cash buyer or if you need financing — you should definitely order a home inspection so that you know exactly which areas in the home need work.

If you have any questions about home inspections or you're thinking about buying or selling a home in Rancho Cucamonga, give me a call or send me an email. I'd be happy to help.

Monday, October 31, 2016

Why Fall Is a Great Time to Buy a House

In our real estate market, fall might just be the best time to buy a home. There are four main reasons why that I wanted to share with you.

Many of you have asked me why fall is the best time to sell a home. You might hear Realtors say that any season is the best season to buy a home, but it really depends on the conditions out there. Is it a buyer's or seller's market? What properties are you looking at?

Our market is currently a seller's market because there is not enough inventory and there are not enough people who are qualified to buy a house. However, here are the top four reasons why fall might just be the best time to buy your house:

  1. Lower home prices. October is the best month to snag a deal when buying. That's not just a random guess; it's based on a Realty Tracks analysis of more than 32 million home sales over the past 15 years. On average, October buyers pay 2.6% below market value at the time of purchase.
  2. Less competition. Like a beach after Labor Day, the Realty market starts to clear out as the days turn crisp. After the summer when all the home buying frenzies out there are over, inventory levels get even lower than they already were. Most summer buyers have already found a home, meaning that fall buyers will have less competition on the market, too.
  3. The holidays are around the corner. Most home sellers are worn out after the summer selling season, but they're also caught between a real estate rock and a hard place because the holidays are bearing down on them if they want to settle in before then. Buyers who want to move in time to host Thanksgiving and put up the Christmas tree need to close now–use that window to your advantage like a savvy Realtor would.
  4. Year-end tax credits. Nobody wants to buy a house purely to make their accountant happy, but there is an incentive to closing a home at the end of the year. Come April 15th, you might be able to take some serious tax deductions like property taxes, closing costs, or mortgage insurance.

    Fall real estate is like the beach after Labor Day.

If you have any more questions about buying a home this fall, give me a call or send me an email soon. I'd love to talk through your situation with you!

Monday, August 8, 2016

A Home Buying Checklist to Keep You From Buying the Wrong Home

Here is a list of things you shouldn’t overlook when in the process of buying a new home:

  1. Bedroom count and general floor plan. You may be tempted by a house because it’s staged nicely, but you have to look beyond the furnishings and see if it has what you really need.
  2. What direction the house faces. Facing West is great if you like to watch the sunset every day, but not so great when your electric bill is skyrocketing because your air conditioning is running non-stop.
  3. The status of the structural walls. If you’re contemplating a future renovation, you want to make sure the walls you want to remove aren’t load-bearing walls. In this instance it would be a good idea to bring a structural engineer along with you to take a look at it.
  4. Is there enough pantry space? Though this can be easily remedied with a quick renovation, it can often be a deal-breaker for many people.

    The better the school system, the better the value of your home.

  5. What shape is the floor in? Replacing floors can be an expensive undertaking.
  6. Is there an HOA? This is important to know if you’re looking to paint the home purple or display your collection of flamingoes on the front lawn.
  7. Schools in the area. Even in you don’t have kids and don’t plan to, a good school district is important to a home’s value. In fact, a lot of home values are primarily driven by the school system in closest proximity. The better the school system, the better the value of your home.
  8. Acoustics. If there is an echo coming from the upstairs bonus room, think of how bad it will be once you have two kids playing in it.

Remember, even though these things don’t seem relevant, they are just as important in conducting a successful new home search. If you have any questions or topics we haven’t dealt with, don’t hesitate to give me a call or shoot me an email.