Category Archives: Orange County Homes for Sale

Condos vs Single Family Homes In Orange County

There is a constant debate in the real estate industry over which type of home is more valuable and preferable, the condo or the traditional home. And you know what? It’s a tough call and a highly personal choice. Both types of homes offer some great options and seem to be tailor made for certain lifestyles, and indeed each type is definitely suited to specific lifestyles. These should all be considered before the purchase of either type of home and factored into the decision to purchase.

Condos, for example tend to lend themselves towards a more active and professional lifestyle. As many condo complexes are located in urban centers that have become ideal residences for those who work and play in the city. Condos and high rises have become synonymous with city life and developers are now focusing more on building upwards rather than outwards. High rises have become part of the city landscape and builders have had to get clever about how they present their new buildings to match the evolving and discerned taste of today’s average condo buyer. Condos are also offering a number of great lifestyle choices woven into the buildings themselves, health clubs and spas are becoming commonplace in most new developments amongst other valuable additions.

Homes on the other hand have always been the traditional place where people raise families and this has not changed. The single family home has maintained it’s allure over the years and has never lost that special feeling that come with its purchase. Taking care of a home can be a bit more work than a condo but that is all part of the charm of a home, you are free to make it into your dream residence. Another thing about homes that is a good asset is the fact that your neighbors are a short distance away. It can be aggravating living in a condo or apartment with noisy neighbors. Single family homes generally have a sense of freedom to them that is hard to achieve in any kind of housing.

Both types of homes are great investments that should see nice appreciation in the coming years. Single family homes are becoming more rare as space is quickly being used up in many areas. Condos on the other hand seem to be going up everywhere around any typical city. Whichever you choose, know that you are making a long-term investment in your future.

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Buying a Home? Don’t Make These Mistakes

It’s a buyer’s market, no doubt about that. Inventory is up, sales prices are down and mortgages are more affordable than ever. However, that doesn’t mean that the road to homeownership is completely free of potholes. There are still some very common mistakes that many homebuyers – especially first-time homebuyers – may find themselves making.

1. Judging a House By Its Cover

When choosing a new home you have to be willing to look beyond the surface. The market right now is filled with older homes and bank-owned properties that may not have been kept up well. It’s easy to fall in love with some of these homes on first sight, but they may be hiding serious problems below the surface. It’s always best to know about these problems ahead of time so you know what you’re getting into and how much this new house might actually cost you in the long run. Don’t skimp on the home inspections.

2. Location, Location and That Third Thing Too

Of course, the house itself is the most important factor when it comes to choosing a new home, but you should also take a close look at the location that you’re moving into. How is the neighborhood? That house may not be worth it when you realize you’ll have to deal with noisy (or nosy!) neighbors or a power-mad homeowner’s association. It may not be worth it when realize that your new home comes complete with a long commute to the office, or even just to the grocery store. It may not be worth it if it’s in an area of town where you’re afraid to leave your car in the driveway at night because it might be stolen by the time you wake up in the morning.

The house itself is only a part of what you’re purchasing. Make sure you really get to know the area before you buy into it. Drive the neighborhood at different times of day. Test out the commute to and from work a few times. Eat at one of the neighborhood restaurants. You want to be happy with every part of your new home.

3. Not Knowing What You Can Afford

Many buyers just don’t do their homework before they start looking for a home. Some do a limited amount of homework, using websites and online calculators to determine what they think they can afford. But few do the real amount of homework that should be required. Calculators can give you some decent numbers some of the time, but they can’t predict how a lender will react to your loan request. Most banks have tightened up their requirements in recent years, making it a bit trickier to qualify for a home loan. It’s best to go straight to a lender or mortgage broker and ask them to help you determine exactly what you will be able to afford. Then, armed with those real and realistic numbers, you can begin your search for a new home.

4. Making Unrealistic Offers

Everyone’s heard the stories by now – sellers are so desperate to sell their homes they’ll gratefully take any ridiculous offer that is thrown their way! Obviously, that’s an exaggeration, but many home buyers take this attitude when they start looking for homes. Even if a house has been on the market for months, giving the seller a severely low offer, or making unreasonable demands, will be more likely to insult them than to earn their gratitude. And nice homes in nice neighborhoods – especially those that have just come on the market – will still often get multiple offers. Don’t try to unfairly take advantage of sellers in difficult positions, it has a good chance of backfiring on you. Stick to reasonable offers and you’re still bound to find a good deal.

5. Skipping the Agent

Many buyers now think that because so many websites offer so much information on current listings, they no longer need an agent to help them find a house. Of course, that part may be true. With the prevalence of good internet searches, it is entirely possible to find the home you’re looking for all by yourself. But what about the rest of the process? Handling the intricacies and irritations of financing, making offers, getting home inspections, setting up showings, dealing with seller’s agents and every other important aspect of buying a home is usually far more than a buyer is able to handle on their own. Hiring an agent to act on your behalf helps to guarantee that everything gets done right the first time.

But don’t just hire an agent based on a fancy website or a bus stop bench advertisement. Ask around to friends and family, go online and look up recommendations and testimonials. Find someone who is recommended by someone else you trust before you decide.

When buying a home, take your time and try to be smart about everything you do. With patience, determination and, hopefully, a little bit of professional advice, you’ll do just fine.

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Never Buy a Rent-To-Own-Home Without Considering These 5 Things

Are you are looking into the idea of Rent to Buy homes (also known as lease to own)? How would you like to have a road map to help you find your way? These 5 tips will get you started but, you will need many more questions answered. You can find more tips on the authors site. Do a rent to own at your own risk without consulting the list below!

Consider This….

  1. Location, location, location. The old axiom applies to Rent to Own as it would with any other purchase of real estate. Ask yourself, would I want to raise my children here? If the answer is yes, on to step 2.
  2. If you can get a loan/mortgage and purchase the home outright, you may be better off doing so.If you think you may need to move within 2 or 3 years, Rent to own might be a better option even if you can get a mortgage now.
  3. A Lease to Own/Rent to own is similar to “living together before you get married”. You might find out the other is a perfect fit. Or, you might find out the house has some really nasty habits! Either way, you haven’t made a life altering commitment. And, if you want to, you can take the plunge get a mortgage and make the commitment to own.
  4. Make sure all the terms of the agreement to Lease to Own/Rent to buy are spelled out in writing. This one seems obvious but many people just don’t do this. It’s difficult to be dispassionate about something you really want. Be sure and have someone other than yourself, preferably a real estate attorney, look it over and explains the terms to you. You can call any title company and they will have an attorney on staff who can do this for a very small fee. Do this and you may save yourself finding out some huge, costly, surprise later.
  5. Want to take the risk out of option to purchase? The option to purchase is the agreement that says you can (but don’t have to) buy the home for a specific price for a specific length of time; 1 year 2 year, etc. In a market where home prices are going up fast, less risk for you if you lock in a price in your option to purchase. In a market where prices are flat or falling (like now 2008) you have less risk if you don’t lock in the price. How do you do that? Ask the seller to put in where the purchase price goes in the Option this; “Price will be determined by a mutually agreed upon appraisal at time of executing Purchase Option”. This will mean you get a fair price when your ready to buy and so does the seller!

Other questions you will want to explore; is rent to own right for me? Why? Is now a good time to move? Want to learn more about Rent to Own/Lease to Own? Search the Internet or stop by the authors site and get the information you need to decide if it’s right for you.

Mark Brosius invites you to learn about rent-to-own home ownership and get on our list of available properties for the Metro Indianapolis Indiana area. []

(c) Copyright – Mark Brosius and All Rights Reserved Worldwide.

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