Home Inspections Getting Your Home Ready For The Inspection Picture Perfect The Profit Is In The Plan Use Local Market Forecasts And Location Analysis To Secure Maximum Profits When Selling A Home How Appraisals And Assessments Differ
Many times I go to do a home to complete an inspection for a potential buyer, only to find the home not ready for an inspection. The home not being prepared then makes the buyer suspicious that there are areas that the inspector could not access causing them to back out of the deal. Completing a few routine maintenance items and having the home prepared for the inspection will avoid those long lists of misc.defects on a home inspection report that can scare a potential buyer.
Here are some tips to get your home ready for a home inspection.
1. Make sure the electric is on in the home and to all circuits. A home inspector will not flip breakers “on” or “off” during an inspection.
2. Make sure the gas or fuel is on to all the appliances and that all pilot lights are lit. Inspectors will not light pilot lights or turn on valves.
3. Make sure water is on and functional to all fixtures. Inspectors will not turn any valves to get water to any fixture.
4. If there are any light bulbs burned out, replace them.
5. Clear out stored items under the sinks.
6. If the attic access is located in a closet or other area where your personal effects are in the way, remove all of your personal items from under the access hole and remove any shelving that may be in the way of getting a ladder to the attic. Inspectors will not move any personal items or shelving to access an attic.
7. Grab a screwdriver and check all doors and windows for loose hardware, and make sure they all open/close properly.
8. Clean off the roof and/or gutters from debris, etc.
9. Check for any minor leaks under sinks or drains under the floor in the basement, etc., and have them repaired prior to the inspection.
10. Have your heating and A/C equipment serviced and have record of the last servicing available for proof.
Taking care of these items will not only reduce the laundry list of defects found on a home inspection report, but it will also help secure the deal to sell your home.
Here are a few sources to locate a home inspector in your area.
https://www.coolwebtips.com far as home improvements go, landscaping is a solid investment – in fact, a well designed outdoor project can offer a better return than most of those inside the house. Good landscaping can add between seven and 15 per cent value to your home and has a recovery value of 100 to 200 percent, so shell out now and get it back when you sell.
Many realtors will tell you that a well designed landscape will help you sell your house faster. With today’s explosion of subdivisions, where many of the homes look similar from the outside, landscaping can set your home apart from a neighborhood of clones.
But the key to a profitable landscape is the design, so start with a plan. A poorly designed layout could end up costing you more time and money: without proper planning, that lovely deck you’ve laid may crack in next winter’s frost. So before you go running into the yard with your pick and shovel, get out your paper and pencil.
First consider what you want to use the area for. If you want to have an outdoor kitchen area or pool then your design will look quite different from someone looking for a vegetable garden or a private refuge. There are plenty of garden magazines on the market; study them to get a good idea of what you like and don’t like. Even if you aren’t planning on doing the whole yard now, plan what you’d like to see eventually. Otherwise you may find yourself ripping up this year’s hard work because it interferes with next year’s project.
Plan for your level of maintenance. Think about whether you want a garden that requires a lot of work or something a little easier to deal with. After you put all this work into the design you don’t want to watch it go to waste. If you don’t have time to maintain it yourself you might want to hire someone to take care of it for you, but look into those costs before you start planting.
Which brings us to the ever popular topic of budgets – it’s important to start out with an idea of how much you have to spend, because it’s easy to get carried away out there and there’s no shortage of lovely plants, features and furniture to sink your hard-earned cash into. Be realistic: you might not be able to put in both the pool and the outdoor kitchen this year, but you’ve got your plan. You know it’s coming.
The next step is to sketch out your yard. Divide it into sections and map out what you would like where. Call your utility company and map areas with underground wires and pipes. Identify areas that have special needs (drainage issues, acidic soil, shade and full sun). Next, add the feature that need to “hardscaped”, like patios, fences, fountains, pools and walkways. Depending on the complexity of your design you may want to consider involving a professional, at least to look at your design. If you are undertaking any structural projects it might be wise to have the plans vetted by an engineer. In any case, consult local building codes and do your research. You want to ensure that your hardscaping is appropriate for your particular location and climate concerns.
When deciding on plants, refer back to your sketch to match your greenery with its preferred light and soil conditions. Use marking paint or chalk to mark out planned features and bedding areas in your yard. This will give you a basic idea of whether your design works spatially. You may need to play with the width of the beds or paths to make the plan more visually appealing.
Before you plant, lay your plants out in their place and take a good look. Does the layout look crowded? Try to visualize the final size of the plant. Make sure you leave them enough room, even if your garden feels a little sparse to begin with. It’s better to have a little room between them now rather than ending up with some plants being overpowered by others when they are full-grown.
And now you’re ready to go! It may seem like a lot of work to get started, but a well planned design will ensure that you maximize your investment and create a beautiful space that you (or the next owners) will enjoy for years to come.
Before listing a home for sale in the marketplace, you can discover the home’s true value by obtaining a location analysis and local market forecast. A home’s value can be much greater or less than the perceived value based on its location and other factors. It’s a good idea to find out the home’s true value beforehand so you’ll get the best possible price for your real estate.
Local Market Forecast Explained
A local market forecast bases a home’s value on changing local conditions, in the past and the projected future. There are many factors that are considered in a local market forecast. Some of these include local economy, employment levels and job growth, business development in the area, regional politics, schools, and many other factors. A local market forecast also includes price estimates in which pricing for single-family residences, townhouses, and condos are combined in a median price for the local area.
No matter where you live in the United States, you can now obtain a local market forecast online for most cities. This allows you to protect your real estate investment by asking a realistic price when selling.
How a Location Analysis Works
A location analysis reveals how well your home for sale fares in its location. Homes may be located on a busy highway, a country road, or on a quiet suburban cul-de-sac. The home might be near a railroad track, factory, or near a company that releases certain chemicals into the air. It might be near a regular farm or turkey farms that cause unpleasant smells in the air. There are many factors to consider about a home’s location before determining its actual market value.
A location analysis looks at where your home is located and analyzes it according to other homes located in similar areas. For instance, if your home is located near a chemical plant, you can compare the market value to other homes in similar neighborhoods near chemical plants. The value of the home might be less even if it’s larger in size and better kept than other homes on neighboring streets.
Location matters greatly. Cities where the general value of real estate is going up will often contain neighborhoods where the value of homes is going down. There are hundreds of variables considered in a location analysis to come to an accurate and fair selling price when selling your home.
Other things that are considered in a real estate analysis include city and neighborhood population, sales trends, average household income, property vacancies, recent sales, and many other factors.
Obtaining a location analysis is easy online for many neighborhoods across the United States. It helps you analyze the past, present, and future of real estate in your area with the click of a mouse. Whether you’re a real estate agent or the home’s owner, you can be sure that your home is not overpriced or under priced using these two helpful tools.
Many people think appraisals and assessments are the same thing or at least that they should be for the same amount. The truth is they can vary greatly. Let’s look at each of them.
An appraisal is an estimate of market value. An appraiser can use many methods for coming up with this estimate. For income producing property, the appraiser may capitalize the value of the income stream. (It would take “x” dollars of capital invested at a “y” rate of return to produce an income equal to the rental income generated by this property.) For other properties, an appraiser may use “replacement value.” (It would cost “x” dollars to build this structure if it were being built today.)
Appraisers usually use “comparable sales” when evaluating the market value of a home. They look at nearby properties with similar characteristics, which have sold in the recent past to see at what price they sold. They typically give the most weight to the property they deem to be most like the property they are appraising.
Buyers and sellers generally encounter appraisals when the buyer’s lender has an appraiser make an evaluation of the market value of the property being sold. The lender wants to be sure of the value of the collateral for the loan. An interesting feature that comes into play in this situation is that one indication of value is at what price two unrelated parties will agree to buy and sell the same property. In other words, what is the contract price the seller and buyer of this property agreed on (if they are not relatives).
An assessment is the value your local government puts on your property for the purpose of taxing it. How this value is derived varies from jurisdiction to jurisdiction. Some communities say the value is the same as market value. Some say the value is a percentage of market value. Some appear to actually do what they say they do, and some do not.
I was once a partner in an investment property that we were offering for sale at the time the county re-assessed it. Imagine my annoyance when the assessment came in at one hundred and forty percent of the offer price. We weren’t dummies. The partners were real estate professionals. I appealed the re-assessment, but my appeal was turned down. I offered to sell the property at the assessed price to the appraiser the county had hired to handle the appeals when he was telling me why he could not reduce our assessment. He did not take me up on my offer. Our property sold at the listed price months later. We had paid six months’ taxes on the property at a higher than market value.
On another occasion I helped some elderly people sell a farm they’d lived in all their adult lives. The farm sold for a price a great deal higher than the value at which it had been assessed.
I believe the two examples are fairly typical. Many jurisdictions will “puff up” assessments for businesses and investors and “low ball” assessments for people who have lived in their homes for a long time. Sometimes there are formulas for doing this. “Land use” is one such concept, i.e., the property is taxed at its value as a farm and the fact that it is ripe for dense residential and commercial development is ignored or deferred. Sometimes there are no formulas. It is just done.
For these reasons, it is usually not a good idea to put too much credence in the assessed value of a property when you are trying to figure out market value. They may be the same. They may be vastly different..
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