Home Buying: Five Things to Know As a First Time Homebuyer

07017_elend_433659469

“The ache for a home lives in all of us, the safe place where we go as we are and not be questioned.”-Maya Angelou

 

The prospect of buying your first home can be rather exciting, albeit a little daunting.

However, this endeavor is often fraught with difficulties if you are unaware of what it entails and what you should prepare for. Undoubtedly, the process will likely be overwhelming, however, when done right, you would not only be putting your money down on an excellent investment but you would also end up with a home you will be happy to live in for quite a long while. Furthermore, knowing what you want mitigates the likelihood of buyer’s remorse which is why it is always wise to review your options before pushing through with a deal.

In any case, if you are prepared to find the home of your dreams—whether that may be a unit in the East Gallery Place or a residential place elsewhere, here are some of the things you ought to know to minimize the likelihood of surprises when you do finally affix your signature on that contract:

 

Make sure to have room in your budget for transitional costs

Before you even shop around for homes, it is recommended that you set a budget of how much you are willing to pay for in a home. However, apart from budgeting for the property itself, you would also need to prepare for the transitional costs it entails. Remember, you still have expenses to cover on top of your mortgage so you need to adequately budget for that as well. Set a budget for the unexpected and have a plan for the allocation of the same. The earlier you plan, the less likely you will have any financial snags on top of your big investment so if you are already planning on shopping for homes, start creating your budget plan today.

Working with a good agent is paramount

Many homeowners think that home buying is an endeavor they can pull off by themselves. While they are right, going on about the house hunt and deal by yourself tends to slow down your pace and would take you a lot longer to find a place of your own at the price you can afford. Working with an agent who would be able to assist and guide you throughout the entire process would ensure that not only would you find the property you want but at the right price as well. In this time and age, the internet is at your disposal so use it to your advantage and find an agent who you think can work best to fit your needs. However, do not just arbitrarily go with anyone. Do not risk it and only select the best agent who has the expertise and comes highly recommended as well.

Determine if the price is right

More often than not, the prospect of living in our dream homes can cloud our judgment insomuch that we are willing to go beyond our budget because we are very much taken by a beautiful home. However, take the sparkles off of your eyes and check if your finances are in order before making an offer. Calculate your debt to income ratio and make sure that is manageable and is within rich. At the time, you might feel like you can make it work and that buying a home out of your budget would ultimately pay off. But, remember, paying a mortgage that is too high might end up being a financial encumbrance and would ruin your overall satisfaction and happiness in your investment. After all, just because you can borrow a certain amount to buy a more expensive home does not mean that you should.

Know the potential

First-time home buyers tend to go into the endeavor without managing their expectations which means they would likely disqualify homes that do not tick off all the boxes in their needs and wants list. However, these unrealistic expectations can deter you in the long run as demanding too much of your first home would often mean missing out on the subtle charms it already has as well as its hidden potential. For the littlest and tiniest imperfections, look for ways on how you can improve it instead of dismissing it right away.

Research the neighborhood

More often than not, a home’s location is so much more important than the home itself. In this regard, you ought to find a home that is located in a safe neighborhood that is in proximity to educational institutions as well as commercial establishments and shopping centers. Do not zero your focus on the home alone and look for one that is located in a great neighborhood as well. Choose a neighborhood with a strong sense of community and is safe and secure.

Image Source

 

Advertisements

Smart Home Buying: Negotiating Tips and Techniques Every Homebuyer Must Know

 

how-to-negotiate-property-deal-buyers-agent-melbourne-1200x700

“In business as in life—you do not get what you deserve, you get what you negotiate” –Chester L. Karrass

 

It has never been any question whether real estate is a good investment, it has long been considered a given.

However, considering that real estate property might be one of the biggest investments you would probably make in life, it is imperative that you go approach the endeavor with much contemplation and shrewdness. In this regard, selecting a property is in by no means a task you should treat arbitrarily—you need to weight your options insomuch that you can find a property that is not only suitable to your lifestyle but comes at the best price and terms as well. After all, an old adage in real estate is that everything is negotiable. But, just how much is your prospective willing to compromise? Furthermore, do you possess the necessary skills to bring the agreement equally in your and the seller’s favor?

Buying a home does not only mean scoring the best property available, but it also means getting it at the best price possible as well. However, negotiating is a rather tricky skill that is refined over years of experience. Furthermore, it requires a great deal of knowing when to start the negotiations, how to push for more and when you should stop. In conjunction with all those, you would need to possess a shrewd skill in researching the real estate market plus a commitment to being familiar with your prospective property’s neighborhood. Take note: The more properties there are than people who want them, the better your chances in a successful negotiation are. And in this case, homebuyers have more leverage over the home prices which would then create an excellent avenue for negotiation on some homes.

Unfortunately, most homebuyers are unaware of their haggling options. Consequently, opportunities for negotiations are left unexplored when they should have been capitalized. To ensure you get the best deal possible for the prospective homes you are considering—whether that may be a condo for sale in Quezon City or elsewhere—take a gander at your options for negotiating. In any case, here are some of the techniques and tips you should never miss as a homebuyer:

 

Get an agent

As a buyer, you may have a little breathing room when it comes to the purchase of real estate property. But, that does not automatically mean that you are in the driver’s seat and can dictate the terms of how the sale would go. Unfortunately, with property listings available online, many homebuyers fall into a false sense of security and would think that real estate agents are unnecessary. Sure, you might find a house online but that does not guarantee you can actually get that offer to close.

Put your finances in order

Your offer would be so much more persuasive if it holds more weight. In this regard, you should get yourself pre-approved for a home loan. To highlight its importance, take note that some home sellers would not even consider prospective buyers who do not have a mortgage preapproval making it a paramount requirement not only in negotiations but in buying homes as well.

Do the math before getting hung up on small price differences

More often than not, homebuyers—especially first-time homebuyers—tend to be a little myopic about their prospective real estate property insomuch that they would only look at the price without considering other factors. Sometimes, you need to consider every aspect of the deal before you even consider closing on it or overlooking it. There might be instances wherein small differences would actually mean you get a better property or a more flexible payment rate. In any case, you should do the math and consider the deal from all angles before accepting or rejecting an offer.

Base your offer on the home value and not the list price

Before pitching an offer for a prospective property, take a look at the recent sales in the neighborhood first. From there, you would get the necessary information to arm you in your negotiation endeavor. Keep in mind that homes priced at or below the market value are highly unlikely to budge on their asking price whereas those priced at above market value and have been in the market for a while would be more receptive to lower offers. However, do not immediately jump the gun on the negotiations and accompany your negotiation pitch with a market analysis first.

Be prepared to move fast

Most properties that go in the market tend to disappear as soon as they hit the listings—especially if they are in ideal neighborhoods and are priced reasonably. In a competitive market, keep in mind that your first offer SHOULD BE your best offer. You might never get another chance, so ensure what you offer would not only be persuasive but enticing enough as well.

Image Source

Real Estate 101: The Top Five Red Flags for Homebuyers

Business handshake at work

 

“Home is a place you grow up wanting to leave, and grow old wanting to get back to.” –John Ed Pearce

 

The real estate market has never experienced a rising increase in demand as much as it did today.

While it may experience sporadic periods of highs and lows, the fact remains that more and more people are buying real estate in this decade than any other decade in history. Unfortunately, the resultant effects of this phenomenon can have positive and negative takeaways. For one, the robust real estate market would mean a healthy economy, on the other, however, it could open up the possibility of individuals who would try to leverage the market trend into their favor in the worse ways possible. As it is, the rise in demand for real estate properties would also mean a significant increase in home sellers who would try to sell their properties. However, with the real estate market rife with competition, how do these sellers ensure that their homes would potentially be the one you would select? How do they drive the deal home?

While some would just double their efforts in their endeavor to sell their home, some sellers would resort to less than favorable means in selling their homes. This does not mean that they would outright lie to you, but they would not tell you the entire truth about their homes or it might ruin their chances of striking a deal with you. Sellers who are eager to sell properties in challenging and even difficult communities would not always disclose everything to potential buyers. Unfortunately, getting a professional inspection of every house you tour is not exactly feasible or practical for your finances. Not to worry though, you just have to keep an eye out and be a little more thorough during the house tour. Be meticulous about the houses you inspect and narrow down your choices by doing your own pre-inspection.

Whether the houses you are looking to inspect are located in a lush neighborhood such as Garden Towers or somewhere a little more unassuming, here are some of the red flags you ought to look out for:

 

A major exodus from the neighborhood

Sure, one of the things that a home seller must highlight would be the curb appeal of their homes in order to attract prospective buyers. However, as a buyer, you should not let the visual appeal of the home’s exteriors keep you from examining what is down the street. If you notice that there are several other homes for sale or if nearby businesses have been vandalized or have closed down, electing to live there might not be such a good idea. Talk to your neighbors and ask them about the community. If everyone is looking to leave, you might want to take that as a signal that the home would potentially be a bad investment.

Bad maintenance

Another thing you should look out for is whether or not the home seller took care of their homes and took the necessary measures to ensure its proper upkeep and maintenance while they were still living there. If they horribly failed in this aspect, you might not want to push through with the deal with them. After all, if you can see the gutters with plants growing in them and grime on the home times, it would beg the question: What else did these homeowners neglect and overlook?

Bad smells

A home reeking with fetid smells is a home that has been neglected for far too long. Regardless of whether the smell is outside or inside, it would make you think what sort of surprises there would be in store for you on account of the grody smells. In any case, bad smells should be a huge red flag. However, you should also take into account if the homeowner took the extra measure of spraying their homes in huge amounts of Febreeze or by covering it in potpourri. If the house smells too fragrant and would border on cloying, the home seller is probably trying to mask the more noxious smells.

Fresh paint on only one wall

While it is recommended (at times, even necessary) for home sellers to paint their walls in neutral hues before selling them, there would be something terribly suspect if only one wall is covered and painted. Sure, fresh paint can really bring out the potential of drab walls and boring homes. However, they can also be used as a medium to conceal problems such as water damage, mold or mildew. If the room has strange smells or there are any visible stains in the ceilings or walls, you might want to refer to an inspector who can identify molds and leaks.

Faulty or old wiring

Sure, you are not exactly an electrician but it is best to ensure that the electrical wiring, as well as all the switches, are all in good working order. After all, you would not want to subject yourself to busted circuits, flickering lights, and outlets that do not power anything. If outlets are either warm or hot, there might be an underlying wiring problem which you might want a professional electrician to check.

 

Image Source

The Top Four Mistakes First-Time Homebuyers Make

home-loan

“You cannot have everything you want, but you can have the things that really matter to you.” –Marissa Mayer

 

Buying a first home in today’s real estate market should be relatively easy. However, for those who are going into the venture sans the experience, it can be rather confusing and a tad bit frustrating at times. As of recent times, the housing market is showing no signs of declining and slowing down—in this regard, many prospective homeowners would feel incredibly confident about the timeliness of their purchase should they choose to buy a house now. However, if one travels through the unchartered  (in the case of first-time homebuyers at least) paths of buying and acquiring homes, mistakes and oversights are easily made. If you are a budget or have saved up for this monumental milestone (as is the case with most first-time homebuyers), you cannot really afford to make any error that would inevitably lead to a financial blunder.

Regardless of how small a financial mistake might be, making the wrong move in a saturated market would often lead to pecuniary remorse and inevitably, home buying misery. Unfortunately, first-time homebuyers are predisposed to committing these errors if they are left to their own devices and are armed with insufficient information. In any case, you can mitigate the chances of committing these lapses if you are equipped with prior knowledge prior to making your first purchase. Whether you are eyeing your first home to be in Avida Towers Cebu or elsewhere, here are some common first-time homebuyer mistakes you ought to avoid:

 

Buying a home that is too expensive

What is expensive and cheap is relative to how much the homebuyer actually earns. However, regardless of what kind of home you are looking to purchase, you should always remember to stay within your budget. How much you can afford largely varies but it depends on your debt to income ratio. Remember, you are not only going to be spending for the home alone, you would also have to take into account your monthly utility bills, groceries, insurance, etc.

Not hiring a realtor

As this is your initial venture into buying a home, it would bode you well if you worked with a professional whose expertise is in how real estate works. More often than not, homebuyers would rather forego the assistance of a real estate agent thinking that this is just another expense. Sure, it might be another aspect to pay for but think of it as a worthy investment. After all, you would stand to spend more should you purchase a home without the aid of an agent.

Not leaving room in the budget for other expenses

Unlike renting, owning a home would mean that if something breaks, you have to fix it. However, most first-time homebuyers do not seem to realize this. As a result, they would often not leave any room in the budget for any other expense. Your budget should not only comprise of what you pay for the initial down payment of your first home. In fact, it should cover a myriad of things. In this regard, you should also ensure that you leave enough to have extra money each month should you ever have the need for it.

Putting too much or too little down

Coming up with the down payment is already a major challenge when it comes to buying your first home, so defraying most of your home’s total price should be a good thing, right? Not necessarily. Putting up too much money for the down payment would cause a severe imbalance on your money savings and as a result, you may end up bungling your monthly budget. In this regard, you should not be overeager about paying up majority of your first home’s total price. Instead, pay just enough that you would still have a little legroom in your monthly budget to ensure you can cover any other expenses should you need it. Remember, you cannot always plan for every contingency, so should an emergency happen, you want to be adequately prepared financially.

 

Image Source

Home Buying 101: Five Questions You Need to Ask Before Buying a Home

“Twenty years from now on, you will be more disappointed by the things you did not do than the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” –Mark Twain

 

Buying a home, regardless of where it might be, is a keystone of wealth. As it is considered a universally fundamental need by all of us, it is understandable that a lot of meticulous thought goes into buying one—particularly if it is your first flat. Furthermore, as your home would probably be one of your life’s most significant and expensive investments, it would only make sense to ensure you get the very best for what you can afford. In any case, whether you are planning on buying a condo in Avida Towers Cebu or elsewhere, here are some questions you should be asking:

Do you offer discounts

As most developers are looking to close the deal with prospective clients and homeowners, many of them are more than willing to shell out discounts. However, you do need to have a flair for negotiation. Do not hesitate to ask for this or you might just miss out. Alternatively, while there is no discount, there might be other offers and incentives such as pre-selling promotions. In some cases, your unit might come with free furnishings depending on where it is.

Is the reservation fee refundable

If you do not wish to incur penalties or other incidentals, ask your developer whether the reservation fee is refundable. After all, you would not want to waste money should you decide not to push through with the sale. Elect to have it in writing so that you have a written proof. Incidentally, knowing whether a reservation fee is refundable or not will tend to affect your final decision in choosing a home as well.

What are the standard finishes included?

While your developer is going to inevitably show you model houses and units, you cannot reasonably expect that your finished home would look precisely like them. They are just a preview of what your homes might look like once it is finished. To ensure that you and your developer are on the same page, it is best to know what is included in the property you are buying. This means taking note of the finishes you might often overlook such as the kitchen accessories, window types, type of floor tiling, door design and the like.

Can I customize my unit?

Everyone wants to give their homes a bit of character and personality, but this is not exactly possible all the time. Ask your developer if it is possible to incorporate some changes into the design of your unit and if you can change some of the layout. If you have bought the property during the pre-selling stage, there is a likely chance that it would be accommodated during the construction, but it usually comes at an additional cost.

When will the building be fully completed?

While the date of completion is not a certain date, you should have an idea of when your developer expects to complete his project. In this regard, you would be able to adequately plan your move-in and expedite the process as well. Furthermore, if you move in without the entire building being finished just yet, there is a likely chance that you would be dealing with the noise and distraction of the construction work going on outside. Apart from knowing when your unit would be finished, it is also a good idea to ask when your developer reasonably expects to finish the building as well.

Image Source

 

A Guide to Suburban Neighborhood in the South

There’s a sprouting suburb in the South, and you don’t know if moving there is a good move.

Vermosa is a suburban development that features active living. It’s in Cavite, and it perfectly combines residences, retail spots and business hubs in one area, which make it seem like a good place to settle down. But hold your train of thought. Did you consider what you need to know before buying a house? Do you know what kind of neighborhood will be at Vermosa?

Before setting your sights on this new development, read on to find out the standards of what makes a good neighborhood.

There are street walks.

And those streetwalkers are for walking.

Some residential communities are disorderly, so cyclists pass through pavements instead. A neighborhood with functional road walks prioritizes walking over the use of vehicles. Low-carbon communities have sidewalks wide enough for bicycles and establishments. It gives the cafés liberty to set up tables for outdoor lounging.

A spacious sidewalk also gives room to set up benches – a great feature for relaxation and people watching.

 

There are various transportation modes.

What a nice feeling to have when travel from work to home is a breeze. Often, an exclusive neighborhood isn’t commute-friendly and is only accessible through private vehicles. An ideal community should be available through different road networks. You can get to Vermosa via Daang Hari Road, SLEX through the MCX exit, and the upcoming Cavite Laguna Expressway (CALAX) Road – which are also the routes of public transportation. The proposed LRT 6 will pass through Daang Hari Road which makes Vermosa accessible to the bulk of passengers. The community is also less than an hour away from Makati, Manila, Muntinlupa, and Tagaytay.

 

There is a foundation for education.

De La Salle Santiago Zobel School (DLSZ), a member of De La Salle Philippines (DLSP), is an established educational institution in the South. It will open its second campus in Vermosa to provide quality basic and secondary education. DLSZ is also an establishment that pronounces spiritual and moral maturity through the teachings of Christ.

The DLSZ-Vermosa Campus will implement the Next Generation Blended Learning Program which will include the latest trend and innovation regarding teaching strategies and educational research.

 

There are high-value residences.

Property value varies greatly from one development to another. A neighborhood with quality housing options allows people with the different financial capability to lead a quiet and comfortable life. When there are lots of people are waitlisted, it is a sign that the particular neighboorhood is hot on the market.

Vermosa will have diverse living options with Ayala Land’s urban residential developers – Alveo, Avida, and Ayala Land Premier. Alveo offers upscale residences while Avida is perfect for compact city living.

Since Vermosa is a new community, most of the people in the neighborhood are homeowners. An area with high rate of homeownership is stable. Renters are mobile and flaky, so they don’t add value to the community. Long-time residents have been there all way. They watch out for their neighbors, which makes the area feel safe and secure.

 

There are communal facilities.

 

Vermosa has a total of 165 hectares of open space for wellness and recreation, training facilities, and retail shops.

There’s Vermosa Sports and Lifestyle Complex which will have an Olympic-sized pool, a 400-meter track oval, and a Sports Science laboratory that caters to all the training needs of endurance athletes. The MX Track and the Bike Skills Park offer a place to fill the need for speed and thrills for bikers.

There’s Vermosa Midtown, a pedestrian-focused, bike-friendly area with a commercial district. The Ayala Malls Vermosa will be within the limits of Midtown and will complement the active life of Vermosa by housing sports-themed retail stores.

A contemporary active living is kept alive in Vermosa with its engaging facilities for its residents. Besides these amenities, a balanced community should have a place of worship. It shows the collective and strength of the community.

There should be a hospital, police and fire station.

Safety first.

The right neighborhood adds value to the entire community, not just to the houses separately. You can check out if the community is fit for you if it has the qualities on this list besides the things that you want. Your new neighborhood should meet your standards and if you’ve found it in Vermosa, then go ahead. Enjoy the fulfilling life of active lifestyle.

Five Important Things to Know When Living Alone

“True independence and freedom can only exist in doing what is right.” -Brigham Young

So, you have graduated college, established a career and are now prepared to embark on your life’s next milestone. You have saved enough money to finally live on your own and away from your family to discover new heights and reach your fullest potential. Indeed, living alone can be quite a thrill. The freedom and independence that come along with it are nothing short of exhilarating. However, while living alone means no one can prevent you from doing anything and everything you like, it does not mean that it comes without a set of responsibilities. Before you start scouring the metropolis for prospective Manila properties you can live in, know that living alone means having to fend for yourself. After all, you only have yourself to rely on so it would be understandable to expect a degree of answerability to yourself as a consequence.

For some, the responsibilities that do entail in living independently may be too cumbersome to handle, while others may flourish in their solitude. Regardless, if you have even given living alone some consideration, here are things you should know and expect:

1.) There will be unplanned expenses

No matter how meticulously you partitioned your monthly salary for utility bills, groceries and the like, know that there will be unplanned yet inevitable expenses. No, these are no the things you buy on a whim or an impulse. There are likely events that would cost you to fork some cash to maintain a semblance of livability in your home. An example of this is an appliance breaking down on you or some plumbing repairs that would need to be immediately taken care of. These are things that cannot wait until the next month for repairs if you want to live comfortably.

2.) You need a decent amount of money

Suppose you have gone through leaflets and scoured the web for the ideal home and found one. To your surprise, it is just within your budget. Unfortunately, it might not be as simple as you think. Apart from the money you pay for rental dues, there might be a security deposit you would need to defrag as well. Depending on where you live, your landlord might even request a consigner for the least. To top all that, if you are going to live in an unfurnished flat, you would also need to have your own furniture to fill it up with. With all this in mind, it is important to have a decent amount of savings before deciding on living alone.

3.) Read your contract

If you are planning on renting out a flat, take note that you need to read your lease contract thoroughly. This is because the contents within are legally binding and if you neglect to read it, you may be inadvertently agreeing to something you actually do not. It might be tempting to skim over a lot of pages instead of poring over them then sign it at once, but you will be glad you did not do that if you find something you are not amenable to. Remember, should you break your lease, you are bound to pay up.

4.) You cannot take everything

You might want to pack every single thing you have in your parents’ house that you own, but know that this might not be possible. For one, the space you have might be limited and another thing, you will have more work to do and would have to expend more effort. Additionally, you might end up just filling your new flat with a lot of clutter as well.

5.) You need to spruce up

Living alone means cleaning up for yourself unless you want to live in a hovel. Everything you own would inevitably get dirty and the longer you put them for cleaning later, the more grime they accumulate. Apart from your dishes, you are responsible for your laundry and the general cleanup of your flat. So, if you want to live comfortably (and healthily I might add), it is best if you clean up regularly.

Hassle-free Move: Four Tips and Tricks to Make Moving Day Stress-Free

It is no doubt that moving day can be one of the stressful days you will ever experience in your life. Of course, collecting, stashing away and moving your entire household is no easy feat, so you are inevitably going to encounter a lot of stressors along the way. After all, in the years that you have lived through your old home, stripping it down of your possessions and packing them away can seem like a herculean task—especially if you have spent a significant number of years accumulating your belongings. However, there are ways of ensuring that your moving day goes on without a snag and without ruffling any of your family members’ feathers. Your moving venture might be a huge endeavor, but with a solid strategy and good planning, you can be assured that it would go smoothly for the most part.

So, whether your change of address is to a condo in Manila or elsewhere, here are some tips that will help you make your moving day easy and stress-free:

1.) Start weeks or even months in advance

If you live in a relatively small home with a meager number of possessions, you can start packing weeks before your moving day. However, if you live in a sprawling home with too many valuables to count, you might as well start as early as you can—even months prior to your moving date. Although your moving date may seem rather far, it is best to make some progress in your packing than be overwhelmed with the sheer number of things you have to do come moving day. True, it might be tempting to leave packing at the last minute—especially if you dislike living among boxes or have to use some things inside them. But you will be glad to have packed earlier than you should have. Just remember to pack the things you are not regularly using first and leave your daily essentials for last.

2.) Be organized

Being organized is key during your move as it aids you in staying on top of things. To make sure you stay organized during the move, have a list of all the tasks that you need to do and divide them in weeks. This would give you ample time to complete whatever is written on a particular week’s list. A typical organized moving day list would consist of eight weeks of their own respective tasks.

3.) Clean out the clutter

Clutter can not only induce headaches, but they are eyesores as well that would do nothing to prove visual aesthetics. If you have a lot of clutter lying around at home, it would be a good idea to start getting rid of them before you even start packing. In this way, you would feel a lot more organized. Additionally, getting rid of the clutter would prevent you from packing things you would not necessarily need in your new home—saving you from all of the frustration in getting rid of them once you unpack and get settled into your new place.

4.) Label your boxes and bags

To know where items to be packed should go and to easily identify which is which, you should label all of your boxes and bags. Apart from categorizing them and knowing what the contents inside are, this would also help you determine which boxes and bags are to be opened and unpacked first. Typically, this is best done if the box is labeled according to where its contents will be placed (labeled per room). However, it would also be ideal if you also wrote and included the contents of its label. Boxes that contain important and sensitive documents such as birth certificates, insurances, passports and the like should be placed in a secure folder and should have a different marking than the rest. Ideally, this folder should be in your person at all times.

House Shopping: Four Things to Pay Attention to During A Property Tour

So you have decided to buy a home and know exactly what you need—from the number of rooms you want down to the square footage and the type of porch it has. Fortunately, the website has provided sufficient photos for you to peruse and examine. However, these photos rarely capture the true essence of your home, and though they may say a thousand words, you would never get the proper feel of the home unless you see it for yourself. Whether you choose a home in Ayala land lot in Bacolod or elsewhere, it is always imperative to check the house or lot for yourself. Pictures complemented with flowery and descriptive captions rarely do the actual house justice which is why property and on-site visits are pivotal to every potential homeowner who wishes to buy a home that he or she would love.

Additionally, as a smart homeowner, you would also ask for this to be a part of the process to be safe as you would never know if the photos uploaded online were doctored.
However, to make the most out of your property tour, you need to be critical of several aspects that would significantly affect your decision as to whether to push through the purchase of the home. Initially, you would want to check the bedrooms, the kitchen and the pavement of these prospective homes, but do not neglect to check these other areas as well:

1.) The Neighborhood

Consider that in buying a home, you are not simply buying the house itself, but you are also buying into its neighborhood feel as well. Choosing the appropriate neighborhood is just as important as choosing the right home and more often than not if the neighborhood does not sit well with you, you would not push through with the purchase of the home situated there. On your visit, take note of how the traffic, the condition of the other homes in general proximity and whether it has convenient access to business districts, schools and amenities your family might need.

2.) The Neighbors

At some point in your stay, you are going to have to make friends with your neighbors. This is inevitable as you are not going to stay holed up in your home for a lifetime. As a wise adage would say, a neighbor can contribute to the value of the property. Consider your potential house and your neighbors as a package deal. Take a general feel of the neighbors and try to decide whether you think you can live with these persons for a considerable number of years.

3.) Privacy

As much as we want to make friends with our neighbors, we do not want them prying into our daily and private lives. On your tour, do a quick scope and see if your bedroom overlooks the neighbor’s bathroom or vice versa. If you are entertaining in your backyard, would your neighbors see what is going on? If you are a very private person, these might be just some of the things you want to consider. They are not necessarily deal breakers though as they are easily remedied by hedges.

4.) Your Garage (Or lack of it for that matter)

Checking out a potential home’s garage is one of the things that is easily overlooked during an on-site inspection. However, this is one of the paramount aspects of a home you should consider. Suppose you have three cars and the potential home you are considering of buying only has room for two with no possible expansion layout schemes, what would you do? You cannot simply park your car in the driveway as this is the quickest way to rub your neighbors in the wrong way and cause traffic. Check the garage and see if it suits you and your needs.

Top 5 Decisions New Home Buyers Must Consider

Purchasing a property is an ideal investment one can make. For some people, owning a home is a fulfillment of their dream. But just like any other investments, there are pros and cons when it comes to real estate investment. Before you decide to choose a particular property, there are things you need to consider for as not to regret any decisions later on. And it does not matter if you plan to invest in any Ayala Land properties, you need to be mindful of the preferences you have for a dream home.
However, if you think that investing in a property is just a piece of cake, then you better think again. There are certain steps or guidelines you need to know and follow for you not to experience real estate nightmares. Just because you like a particular property, that does not mean it is best for you to have. Especially if you are one of the first time home buyers, you should consider these things below before you jump into any decisions.

1. Whether to work with a Realtor

While it is true that hiring realtor is important in real estate transaction, it is still up to you on whether or not to hire one. Off course that if you have enough knowledge about the whole process of the transaction. However, if this is your first time in buying a home, then it is best for you to hire a professional agent to make sure that you will have a smooth process for the transaction. Moreover, if there are any confusions about the process, you can always ask your realtor about it. They will be the one who will explain what and what not to do when it comes to real estate investment.

2. Whether to work with a buyer’s agent only

There are some real estate agents are buyers agents or some are sellers agents and some do both. That means you have to know which of the parties you wish to work with. Choosing the right agent is can be a tricky thing to do. That is why it is best for you to be keen when it comes to your decision. Of course, you also have to weigh which party should you trust to make sure that your real estate investment is a success.

3. What neighborhoods to look in

Whether you realize it or not, the community plays a big factor when it comes to healthy living. Obviously, you do not want to live in a place where you are not sure of the safety and security, right? That is why, when you go for house hunting, you have to make sure to ask what kind of neighborhood it has. Moreover, this is one of the many things you can make sure that your family will have a healthy environment to grow up with.

4. What you can afford

As a homebuyer, this is one of the most important decisions you need to consider. Never invest in a home that you cannot afford. Purchasing an expensive property that is beyond your primary income can give you a headache later on. This will lead to a financial problem if you are not careful in choosing and deciding on the kind of property you are going to purchase. Moreover, there are a lot of resources available in the real estate market. You can choose the right property for you to have.

5. Whether to deal with potential problems in the home

One way or another, there will be problems that can be found during the final walk-through of the property. That is why you need to make sure that there will be no damages that can ruin your son-to-be-home. And to give you a proper look at your home, it is advisable to hire a professional to make sure that everything is going to be okay.
Although decision-making can be a little bit tricky especially when you do not know anything about real estate, you can achieve a desirable outcome when you know these tips above.