Buying a home can be a confusing process with a lot of uncertainty. While
everyone wants to find and buy their dream home, nobody wants to get ripped
off. So when you find a property you’re excited about, how can you
be certain the price tag on it is fair and not way beyond what you should
actually be paying? While this can be easy for some people to check, it’s
not always so straight forward for others. Here are a few tips for finding
out if the listed price on a property is fair or if you should look elsewhere
or try to talk the seller down.
Use Public Records
Whenever a piece of property transfers ownership or has a new structure
built on it, the public record regarding that property is modified. When
that ownership transfer involves a sale, the sale price also goes into
the public record. Public records can be an exceptional research tool
for a particular area, giving you information as to how much similar homes
with similar features have sold for. While this is not a guarantee to
the proposed value of the home you are interested in, it’s a great
place to start your research. If the listed price is far below or way
above other recent local sales, you may want to look elsewhere or try
to figure out why.
Think About the Amenities
If you’re considering buying a tract house, consider what benefits
the neighborhood can offer you. While things like swimming pools, tennis
courts, or community gyms can be extremely beneficial, there are other
things to consider. How far away are local schools? Supermarkets? Restaurants?
If these things are within a very short distance, the home’s value
could be significantly higher. In fact, if you can reach these facilities
without even having to get in the car, your value could go up even further.
Look for Value Decreasing Features
There are factors in a neighborhood which can significantly
decrease a property value as well. Location near amenities is one thing, but being
located near major noise sources like busy train tracks or freeways can
drag a property’s value down rapidly. Other negative factors include
overhead high-tension power lines, nearby power production plants, and
industrial facilities which produce a lot of noise during the day and
potentially into the night. Neighborhoods with a lot of foreclosure also
suffer from mutually-decreasing property values. Finally, unkempt and
unsightly neighbors can actually cause a dramatic value loss for the entire
neighborhood as a whole. While several hundred extra dollars per month
in homeowners association fees may seem like a lot, they actually perform
a very important task when it comes to preserving home value for the neighborhood
Is There Potential?
A neighborhood in an area that is being developed or improved is said to
have a lot of “potential” in that homes bought now will likely
see big value increases in the near future. While these can be difficult
to spot, look for signs, such as indications of widening streets or future
construction projects nearby (especially if those projects are markets,
restaurants, or schools). Development is a sign of an area improving in
value, and buying before that development begins could be a wise investment.
This is a double-edged sword, however, as too much development could lead
to increased noise, added crime, and property values dropping quickly.
If you’re looking to buy a new home or sell your current one, call
Dippy Real Estate today at (661) 441-3304 and
schedule an appointment!