When The Real Estate Market is Hot, Every Strategy Helps:
If you’ve been looking for a condo for a while and haven’t found what you’re looking for, there’s a cool new strategy that people have been trying to make their desires known to the public: create a buyer’s website.
What is a ‘buyer’s website?’ You can create a quick website where you (and your significant other if you’re buying together) can mention exactly what you’re looking for, and in what area. You can even include pictures of similar properties to the type of condo you want to buy. Sounds preposterous? In the hot real estate market, any strategy is better than nothing.
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The costs don’t have to be prohibitive. You can use this godaddy hosting coupon code website to get a $1/month coupon. That’s enough for a domain name registration and 1-year hosting (you won’t need more). If you feel it’ll be a high traffic website, you can always opt for a promo code for a virtual private server hosting plan.
After the site is up, you can give a brief introduction to who you are, what you’re looking for and what your budget limitations are. The reason is that there are lots of private sales going on around in any major real estate market. So you want to put yourself out there in case there are developers and/or real estate agents that aren’t your real estate agent who might be looking and want to sell to you.
Here are 4 more tips for finding the perfect condo:
The real estate market is incredibly competitive in many urban markets and finding the perfect condo often feels nearly impossible. In the most high-demand areas, it is not uncommon for buyers to be discouraged browsing the listings and seeing prices that are sky-high. Given that buying can have significant benefits over renting, it is imperative that real estate purchasers find the best condo to suit their lifestyle and needs. The good news is that it is possible for you to find the perfect condo. Here are four tips that you will need to keep in mind when looking at condos with your real estate agent.
1. Look At Structure, Not Appearance
Cosmetic improvements are the best way to increase a home’s value. For example, a new coat of paint will boost the selling price of a condo much higher than what the paint costs. Having a contractor do the painting or doing it yourself will be cheaper than the premium you will pay on the selling price for that fresh coat of paint. Don’t be afraid to consider purchasing condos that are structurally sound but require a little bit of cosmetic work on the inside. These condos frequently sell for quite a bit less than the ones that look brand new and are in move-in condition. If you have a specific home look in mind, then buying a fixer-upper makes more sense. You don’t need to pay the premium for those nice cosmetic upgrades only to pay it again when you remodel it to your liking. With that in mind, make sure that you do a home inspection before purchasing to ensure that there are no structural defects. Issues with the plumbing, for example, will make a happy condo purchase turn miserable quickly.
2. Look For Condos With A Rental Cap
Homeowners Associations (HOAs) can put a rental cap on units within a complex. This limit typically states that only a certain percentage of the units can be rented out at any given time. If the number of rentals already exceeds the cap, then investors shy away from these condos. The inability to rent out these units results in significantly lower asking prices. If you are looking to live in the home as your primary residence for the long-term, the rental restrictions will not affect you, and they usually mean much lower purchase prices. Please keep in mind though that these rental caps will also lower your resale value should you choose to move out in the future, so make sure you plan on living in the property for a long time.
3. Be Mindful Of Your Budget
Do not stretch your budget to get into that beautiful condo. Even the best of places will grow tiresome if you have to sacrifice your lifestyle. Look for condos with mortgage payments that are at most what you are paying in rent currently. Staying under your current rent amount will let you maintain your current lifestyle. Also, some jurisdictions even give tax incentives for mortgage and interest payments made on your principal residence. Your day-to-day expenses will remain the same, and you’ll get extra money at the end of the year to help improve your lifestyle as well.
4. Pay Attention To The Maintenance Fees
Condos with low maintenance fees are tempting. You may see condos that have $500 a month dues and then find that seemingly perfect condo with only $200 a month in payments. Be careful as the fees pay for all the community property. Amenities and some utilities are usually in the monthly maintenance dues. Therefore, when it comes to maintenance fees, cheaper is not always better. Look for condo fees that can reasonably pay for the amenities that you want. It is impossible for a condo to maintain a pool and basketball courts for $10/mo in fees. Conversely, you don’t want to pay $1000/mo for no amenities at all. Condos can levy special assessments when reserves become low. HOAs with low fees probably will wind up having special assessments to make up for the monthly cash flow deficiency. Rather than paying $500/mo continuously and not having surprise charges, you may wind up getting a special assessment of $5,000 without warning. Budgeting becomes very difficult and getting a massive surprise bill can ruin your experience in the condo.
Purchasing the right condo can be tricky in today’s competitive market. You want to be mindful of your budget, concerning both purchase price and maintenance fees. You will likely get the best deals if you look for condos with rental caps and some slight cosmetic deficiencies. While choosing the right home is stressful, the rewards of picking the right house are limitless. These tips are not exhaustive by any means, but they will help guide your search towards the perfect, affordable condo.