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Renting vs. Home Ownership

This is a decision which many people face, and the decision is not as easy to make as it may sound.

As a homeowner, you can reasonably expect the equity in your home to increase over time as your mortgage is paid down. That, combined with regular appreciation in property values, can be a rapid and rewarding way to increase your net worth. In contrast, the person renting over the same amount of time is left with no property investment but may have enjoyed lower living expenses and the opportunity to invest in other opportunities.

When comparing owning to renting, you have to add up all of the figures, including the cost of your home, the size of your down payment, utilities, immediate repairs, interest rates and insurance, and compare them with how much you are currently spending on rent.

Of course, you also have to place a value on the enjoyment and satisfaction that you will derive from owning your own home.




Buying a Home

Your home will likely be your most expensive purchase. That is why you should have all the facts before you make the decision to buy a new home. This report explains the 10 most important tips to consider when purchasing a home.

1. Do a Thorough Inspection

Don’t expect that the seller to confess all the problems with the home. You need to be inquisitive and investigate for yourself to be sure that the home really is a good buy and that you are getting a good deal. Be sure to conduct proper home inspections early on, so that any problems that are detected can be solved prior to closing. You may consider hiring an inspector to examine the home. Make sure you make the contract contingent upon approval from the inspector.

2. Try to get Pre-Approved

A pre-approved mortgage can be easily obtained and saves you time and energy when placing an offer. With a pre-approved mortgage, you can shop with freedom, confidence and security because you know the money will be there to purchase the home you choose.

3. Property Surveys are a Must

As part of your purchase offer, you should add a property survey. This will help you determine where your property begins and ends and will help you determine how to use it. Current surveys should show all structural changes to the home.

4. Check the Title

Before you put any offers, make sure that the house will be yours free and clear. Often times there are tax liens, easements, undisclosed owners or other circumstances which could cause major issues in the purchasing of your home. Be sure that you are making the right decision.

5. Think About the Hidden Costs

Make a list of all the fees you may incur in closing the home so that you know exactly what you will be paying. Having unexpected expenses when moving is something you’ll want to avoid. Sit down with your Realtor® if need be, and ask them what you should be considering. This way you will know what to expect and will be prepared.

6. Buy What You Need

Determine what your are looking for in a home. Often times, buyers get swept up in the emotion and excitement of the buying process and purchase the wrong home. Take the time upfront to clearly define your wants and needs. Put it in writing and measure every home you look at with it.

7. Take Your Time on Closing

People can get excited when closing and may rush through the paperwork. Don’t make this mistake. Take your time and review everything before signing it. Make sure that all the conditions in the contract have been fulfilled and that there is nothing outstanding. Make sure the documentation reflects the transaction, and that nothing has been added or subtracted.

8. Do Your Research

Be sure to research the market and the neighborhood so that you have a good understanding of what you should be paying for your new home. This way you can determine how to bid on a home and when your getting a good deal. If you fail to research the market, making your offer would be like bidding blind. Without knowledge of the market, you could easily make a bad bid.

9. Visit After Signing

Have a clause added to your contract that allows you a couple of visits to the home before your closing. Many owners begin neglecting the home once they know it is sold. By visiting before closing, you can identify this and put a stop to it.




Making an Offer

When it comes time to make an offer you will require current market information and assistance in drafting your offer. You will need a Real Estate Professional.

A Real Estate Professional will communicate your Offer to Purchase to the seller, or the seller's representative, on your behalf. Sometimes there may be more than one offer on a property at the same time. A Real Estate Professional can guide you through this process.

Firm Offer to Purchase

Usually preferable to the seller because it means buyers are prepared to purchase the home without any conditions.

Conditional Offer to Purchase

Usually means there are one or more conditions on the purchase, such as "subject to home inspection", "subject to financing" or "subject to sale of buyer's existing home". The home is not sold until all the conditions have been met.

Acceptance of Offer

An Offer to Purchase is presented to a seller who may accept the offer, reject it, or submit a counter-offer. The counter-offer may be in reference to the price, closing date, or any number of variables. Offers can go back and forth until both parties have agreed to terms or either side ends the negotiations.

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