So, you’ve decided that you want to buy a home…check!
You’re financially prepared and pre-approved for a mortgage with a trusted lender…check!
Now you’re ready to start shopping for the largest investment of your life…yikes!
Don’t worry – here’s a checklist for you investment-minded home buyers to help select a home that has the best potential for re-sale value over time.
I’m going to go out on a limb and assume that most people reading this know not to purchase a home next to a garbage dump…or next to say, the Kardashians. However, any of my past clients that are reading this probably remember me saying at some point during our search: “You can change almost everything about the house itself, but you can’t move the land where it sits”.
There are a many factors to consider with location in regards to price appreciation and re-sale value…but 3 key considerations I like to take into account are:
- Strong school districts: Families will always be drawn to better schools. Whether you have children in schools or not…this should be a consideration when selecting a location to purchase in.
- Neighborhood Assimilation: Are there other similar homes in the area? Ideally, there should be some nicer homes in the neighborhood to help pull up the value of your home. On the flip-side, it’s not ideal to be the nicest home in the neighborhood when you go to sell because there may not be enough comparable sales to support the highest possible price-point.
- Outside Influences: Perhaps the home is a great price, but is that because it’s next to train tracks, a busy road, in a flood zone, or surrounded by deteriorating rental properties? If so, know that you’ll need to adjust your price accordingly when you sell. Likewise, if you are near a desirable amenity – a park, trail, school, or a lake…you can know that there will always be a desire to live near some of these spots.
Is bigger always better? Guys, I bet if you brought home a tiny blue box from Tiffany’s this evening…your significant other would be quite thrilled. Sometimes the best things come in small packages. While the average family home size has more than doubled over the past 50 years, it never hurts to be the smallest home in a neighborhood of larger homes…they will help pull up your value. There has also been a small-house movement that has grown over the past several years that has helped drive up the average price-per-square-foot on smaller homes more rapidly than larger homes. If you think about it, it’s far less expensive to remodel a small home with high-end kitchens, bathrooms, and finishes than it is to remodel a McMansion.
I love finding a great home that is being sold by terrible landscapers! Curb appeal is one thing that can be changed almost all of the time…and making sure that the landscaping looks great, walkways and driveways are clean, paint is fresh, and windows are sparkling is a sure way to increase demand for a home for sale. So if you find a home for sale that is lacking in curb appeal – make sure you don’t gloss over it….it’s a great way to add value to a home.
I’ll keep this one simple: you can change the ugly curtains, paint color, and even counter-tops pretty easily…but it’s more difficult to change the fact that there is only 1 bathroom for a family of 4. Do you want to deal with that horrible layout every morning? Neither does the next buyer. Nor do they want to spend the time/money to convert a bonus room back into what was originally a garage, an exercise room with mirrors all over it back to a bedroom, or a bar/billiards room back into what is supposed to be a formal living room (I’m talking to you, bachelors). Buy a home with a functional layout for the masses…you’ll appreciate it while you live there and experience greater appreciation in value when you go to sell.
Let’s say you bought a home and later found out that there was a noticeable foundation problem. Guess how much extra a future buyer is going to pay you knowing that the foundation was addressed…almost nothing extra. Why? Because they would expect the foundation to be okay in the first place! Repair costs can eat away your potential equity in a property so make sure to get a home inspection to assess a home’s condition before you sign the final paperwork.
We’d love to assist you or someone you know in the purchase of a home. Give us a call today and we’ll help guide you through every step of the process!
Real Estate Broker | Realtor ®
Boardwalk Real Estate, LLC
Phone: (206) 930-7959 | Office: (425) 483-1010
Filed under: Buying a Home |