Home Buying Endeavors: Five Overt Signs You Have Found the Right House

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“A man travels the world in search of what he needs and returns home to find it.” -George Edward Moore

 

Without a doubt, buying a home is probably one of the biggest and most significant investments an individual can make in his or her lifetime.

In this regard, the selection of a home would often be fraught with a myriad of considerations to ensure that one’s investment would pay off. This is particularly true for first-time home buyers who are scouring the market for an ideal home to settle down. Albeit an exciting prospect, one’s home buying endeavor can be rather daunting and intimidating considering that much of what influences your home buying decision would extend beyond the fetching price of a property. Although your fears are well-placed, know that there is a set of signs you can watch out for that would greatly indicate that you have found the right home for you which can be anywhere from an empire east condo to a house in Pioneer Woodlands.

However, before we dive into that, know that finding the right home would be a smoother and easier process if you have a real estate agent who has your best interests at heart (and would not pressure you into buying a property), instinctively know what you are looking for and would not second guess your gut. In any case, here are some of the ways to know that you have found the right house:

 

1.)  You want to go inside the house

An excellent way to tell whether or not the house is a good fit for you is the way it beckons you to take a closer look. One of the things that make a property hunt so exciting is looking at a myriad of homes and not knowing which one could end up being your next home. Some prospective homeowners are fortunate enough to know which home would be perfect for them upon seeing the curb’s aesthetic appeal while most of us would wish to take a closer look. If the house’s exteriors are already entrancing enough to entice you to take a peek inside, then you might just be looking at your future home.

2.) The house embraces you as soon as you enter

Once you enter the home, it just feels right. It is not only inviting, but comforting and warm to the core as well. You take a look around and can truly envision yourself living here. In fact, you are already mentally arranging the furniture to how you wish it would look once you take up residence. Furthermore, the house encourages you to explore. If the house feels like home to you, then it probably is.

3.) You feel possessive about the house

You take any negative comment said about the house personally–even if the said comment makes a valid point. You see the house’s flaws as quirks and would be rather offended if it is pointed out as something that devalues the home. In fact, to you, these flaws are just a few of the things that would add to the subtle charm of the home and you would defend them. You see beyond the flaws and are starting to fall in love.

4.) You are comfortable in the bathroom

An excellent way to tell whether a home would be a suitable fit for you is to check the bathroom. Walk inside and try to get its feel. Does it make you feel comfortable insomuch that you could see yourself spending significant time in there? Or are you a bit iffy about how you feel? If the bathroom has an inviting feel to it and would make you want to poke around and even compelled to run the bath or open the shower, this might just be your house.

5.) It fits your basic needs

While the house might not meet every single criteria you have in your list, you can see yourself compromising. Sure, the dynamics might not hit every standard you have set but you at least have your basic requirements met. In this regard, you find yourself agreeing to the home’s minor setbacks. It might not have the garage you wanted, but it comes with the number of rooms you want and the area is spacious. You would make certain concessions for the home and might even realize in that moment that the things the house is missing from your list are not really necessary and that you can do without them, In a flash, you might even realize that you can be flexible as to what would have been deal-breakers to you which just so long as you can have the house.

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Smart Investments: Questions to Ask Yourself When Asking Whether You Should Buy a House or a Car First

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“I will tell you how to become rich. Close the doors. Be fearful when others are greedy and be greedy when others are fearful.” –Warren Buffet

 

Now that you have graduated from college, you have your whole life ahead of you. With this in mind, you have quite a lot of plans as to what you should do with your life.

So right off the bat, you have landed a good and stable job that pays you quite well every month. In this regard, you have saved quite enough and think you are ready for your first investment. Considering that you have been saving some money for quite a while, you think you have sufficient money for your first significant investment which can only be one of two things: A car or a home. Most individuals in their early or mid-twenties would probably invest in a car seeing as majority of them still live with their parents. Moreover, having your own car gives you certain bragging rights by showing it off wherever you go—which is what young individuals aare aiming for: temporary satisfaction.

However, there are also some individuals who wish to become a homeowner and live a life separate from their parents. By now, they have probably scoured every possible property they can afford—from the units of Avida Towers Centera to the ones in Avida Asten. However, where should your money go? To a new house or a new car? Well, this is no easy question to answer and it all really boils down to what sort of pecuniary circumstance you are in as well as what your needs are.

There is no doubt that quite a lot of people would advise you to invest in a home first seeing as it would only appreciate over time whereas a car would not. While this sentiment is credible and would hold true in the long term, most working professionals would end up buying both a home and a car. So, what is the real difference if you simply bought one now as in the end, you will probably have enough money for both? In this regard, we can say that it is not really a question of which is best for long term investment but rather which should be purchased first. If you are on the hedge, the questions below might help you arrive at a decision:

How long will your current car last?

If you decision to buy a new car is solely based on your current car’s life expectancy then have a competitive mechanic take a look at it and give you a rough estimate. If it does not last you for more than five years, ask if there are any cheap repairs you can do to increase it. Moreover, are these repairs worth the money based on the car’s overall worth?

 

Will your overall living expenses be cheaper before or after you purchase a house?

If you wish to live independently, pay your own bills and have a life away from your familial home then no doubt, you should purchase your own flat. However, if you had been renting prior to this purchase, weigh your options first. Will the overall cost be significantly cheaper? Remember, you may effectively be getting rid of paying rent but in its place you would have to pay insurance, mortgage, utilities as well as homeowner’s taxes.

 

If you bought a house now, how long would it take you to save enough cash to purchase a car? (Vice Versa)

Both the car and the home are inevitable purchases in life. What you need to do is ask yourself how much money you can comfortably afford to set aside each month in order to buy one of the two.

 

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Fabulous First Homes: Three Major Must-Haves for Your First Home

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“If you have not found it yet, keep looking. Do not settle. As with all matters of the heart, you will know it when you find it.” –Steve Jobs

 

A home is a keystone of financial wealth and stability—so much so that an ordinary Filipino would spend majority of his or her life saving for the first home. Whether this may be a starter home or a condo unit in Bonifacio Global City is up to them, but one thing is for sure: it is one of the most (if not the only) significant investments a Filipino individual will ever make in his or her life. However, more often than not, a potential homebuyer can get too excited about the prospect of finally owning his or her own home that they would often get much too focused on the main goal and pay little attention to the other details and aspects worthy of their attention. Unfortunately, this can be a serious oversight as these prospective homebuyers, in their rush and excitement to finally own a home, would end up buying the first home that first their budget.

Whether this is a good or bad thing largely depends on what the homeowner is looking for. However, as a responsible homebuyer, it is your duty to be a little discerning and meticulous about the features of your first home apart from what it could potentially offer you. In this regard, you should know what constitutes as a good first home as not only will this predict a home’s longevity, it would also dictate its resale value. If you have decided to finally purchase your first home, here are some key elements and features you should be looking for:

An affordable price tag

Unless you have been gifted with an exorbitant trust fund that you can spend on building your first home, an affordable price tag should be the foremost feature you should be paying attention to. First homes should be affordable and with good reason. Remember, you are buying to live not to invest. So, unlike a trade-up buyer, you do not have any equity to roll into the purchase of your next home. In this regard, the financial aspects of buying a first home such as the down payment would be the initial concern of the homebuyer.

A house for the next ten years

Longevity should also be a consideration when it comes to your first home. Remember, you are going to be staying here a lot longer than you might think. Buy a home that would not only accommodate the family you have now, but the one you intend on having for the next ten years. In this regard, it would be best if you and your partner would talk about how many kids you are planning to have so that you can plan how many bedrooms your first home should ideally have.

Ideal location

To you, saying location is key might be long tired. But in your first homes, this should be an elementary feature. After all, you do not want to raise your kids in a bad neighborhood nor would you want to commute for hours to an end just to get to work. Indeed, location is paramount when it comes to choosing your first homes. Look for neighborhoods with well-maintained yards and where you can see a good community. Talk to your potential neighbors and ask about the neighborhood’s pros and cons. Get as much information as you can. After all, choosing where you live is a pivotal decision. So, you might as well choose the best place that is within your budget for you and your family.

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Home Living: Four Reasons You Need Homeowners Insurance

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“It is a privilege to wake up in this house that existed before us, and will exist after us.”-Tim Cuppett (homeowner)

Without a doubt, our homes are bastions against outward elements—a place we can call our sanctuary, if you may. It is universally considered as a protective shelter and more often than not, it is symbolic of all the years of hard work we have done in order to erect such a place. Moreover, it also happens to be one of the most significant investments we would probably make in our lives. In this regard, it would only make sense to protect it adequately and ensure that should anything untoward occur, you and your family would not be left without a roof over your head. And the best way to sufficiently protect your homes is to have it insured with homeowner’s insurance.

Yes, you might have thought that this is another recurring expense on top of the exorbitant amount you have already paid for the home itself. But the truth of the matter is, if you cannot afford home insurance then you cannot afford a home. You could never tell what might happen, and if a fire razes your homes, you would be left without a shelter and without your belongings which are a scenario rendering you close to destitute. Your home is precious, and for that reason alone you should protect it. Any damage done could leave lasting financial and emotional consequences—let home insurance mitigate it. In any case, if you have been hoping to buy a condo in Avida Towers Centera or elsewhere, it is best to review the reasons why you should insure your home:

1.) Natural disasters are a dangerous reality

Just four years ago, Typhoon Haiyan devastated the Philippines, particularly in the Visayas area. The aftermath of the hurricane left many Filipinos homeless, and as such, most of them were not able to rebuild their homes until much later. We would never know when a natural disaster could occur—whether that may be an earthquake, fire, typhoon or anything similar. Should this be the case, we should ensure that our homes are protected so as not to leave ourselves and our families homeless.

2.) Man-made risks can cause a lot of damage

Much like natural disasters, manmade risks are fortuitous events. Although you may have armed your homes to the teeth with security cameras, surveillance systems and the like, manmade risks such as thefts, terrorism, riots, arson, etc. still pose a threat to the security and protection of your home. Home insurance, albeit only some of them, provides you with the assurance that reparation would be provided should any of manmade untoward events occur. However, should your insurer not provide this benefit, you can always add an additional fee for this benefit.

3.) Everything has value

Depending on your insurer, home insurance usually provides coverage for two things: the construction of the home itself and the contents within. Unfortunately, some items might not fall into the category of essential items that would need to be insured. Many of us would have items that have sentimental value, jewelry or maybe even some art installations and paintings that might have had cost us a fortune. To ensure you have everything you wish covered, read your policy and coverage and opt for a rider or two.

4.) It gives you peace of mind

Last, but certainly not the least having insurance gives you peace of mind. In this regard, you would be able to sleep well at night knowing that should any unforeseen circumstance occur that might cause you to lose your home, you and your family will be able to ride the tide with insurance. Remember, peace of mind is priceless, and so is your home. You should regard it as more than a structure of four walls and selected paint—it is a sanctuary that cultivates relationships and offers its inhabitants utmost protection.

 

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Philippines Real Estate: Things You Need to Know About Buying a Condo in the Philippines

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“Every person who invests in well-selected real estate in a growing section of a prosperous community adopts the surest and safest method of becoming independent, for real estate is the basis of wealth.”-Theodore Roosevelt

In modern Philippines, you would be hard-pressed not to find a condominium tower in major cities. In fact, it may be argued that you can find one (or one about to be erected) in almost every nook and cranny in its biggest metropolis, Metro Manila. Of course, this rising trend of condominium living is to be attributed to the proliferation of these real estate projects. After all, with a Filipino’s perpetually busy lifestyle, living in a condominium unit would not only be convenient but ideal. With this in consideration, the Philippine condominium market remains as robust as ever and shows no signs of slowing down. After all, with the ever-increasing demand, condominium developers must endeavor to address that exigency.

As Manila is rife with individuals seeking condo units (seeing as it is a premier spot for professional and career growth), it would inevitably be area developers would be so keen to develop. Makati, Fort Bonifacio, and Ortigas are three prime spots where condominium units are the most prevalent. However, with a myriad of options to select from, buying a condo can easily get tricky. How can you ensure that the unit in two serendra is ideal for you? Is there any way of knowing whether the property in question would make a sound investment? While there is no telling for sure, it would be best if you armed yourself with information as regards the property you are looking to buy.

Otherwise, here are a few things you should consider to help you decide where you should put your money:

When in doubt, check the rental yield

Experts in real estate would argue that rental yield is a paramount criterion for real estate investment—and they are right. The Asian average is around 4.2%, but this number is nothing in comparison to those of Metro Manila where rental yields are at an all-time high. Manila is a prime spot for condominium investment as investors can expect a yearly influx of individuals who are looking for condo units to rent—from the students to young professionals.

Consider those places that are near to BPO offices, central business districts, techno-hubs and significant developments as these will be driving factors in raised rental yields.

When looking for condominium units to invest in, consider smaller units

Most individuals looking for a condo unit to rent would hardly be looking for a full-blown condominium complete with three rooms, a suite, and a rather spacious bedroom. Considering as they will mostly be living alone, renting a big condo unit would not only be impractical but unnecessary as well. Save for a few exceptions, it has been determined that the rental demand for one-bedroom and studio type units are higher than two-bedroom units and up—most especially in developments in or in proximity to central business districts.

This is because most potential condominium tenants would likely be looking for only enough space for themselves only making the extra rooms extraneous. So, instead of investing on condos with big spaces and some rooms, choose the single unit ones.

In sum

If you are looking to invest in real estate in the Philippines, breaking ground with condominium units is an excellent way to start. Condominium units are known for their affordability and high rental yields as compared to the Asian average. Select premier areas where the working and student population remains the highest. Furthermore, choose properties in proximity to business districts, schools and BPOs and you are guaranteed a good investment.

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Independent Living Starter Pack

Finally, you’ve been able to move into your newly acclaimed affordable condo in Mandaluyong City. It surely feels great to say that you are free finally. Hooray! But we all know that independent living is not just all about the happiness and perks of living alone. If you are that person, or someone who is planning to live away from parents, relatives or guardians, for fun, here is your solo living starter pack:

I am so glad that I MADE this happen

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Other people have that luxury or blessing to be given a new house or condo unit for his or her use (yes, you are super lucky!). And it’s a different wonderful story for those who had struggled for we-do-not-know-how-many-years before they were able to get their place finally. Since from renting to owning and paying his or her dues are difficult, the return of glee and happiness is priceless. So yes, you are so glad that you made that happen!

You will remember all the hardships you’ve been through to be able to see yourself in your dream home and thinking of all the possible countless things you can do since you are now alone. Yay, excited!

Wait… am I really ready for this?

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So here comes self-doubt and anxiousness creeping in. From being so joyful and ecstatic about imagining yourself living independently, the thoughts of how will you be able to pay everything, have the time and energy to clean and cook, study and work at the same time, and much more kicks into you. This doubting stage is not just for a one moment, but it will get it into you a couple of times; possibly after a bad day, when you are sick, too exhausted or whatnot.

No worries, dear. This thought will not haunt you forever if you claim it yourself that you are really ready and your decision of living independently is nothing but correct.

Got to make my place clean and presentable

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I don’t know if it’s just me or whenever we have something new. We want to make and keep it clean as much as possible. Moreover, you want to see your belongings beautiful and in pristine condition, because you know how precious it is for you and how hard it was before you finally get it into your hands. Same as with your new house, you do countless hours of cleaning and keeping it nice. Yes, hardworking!

Then that day of laziness

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It’s not every day that you will choose to pick up the broom and sweep the floor, if it is, good for you and your home. But for those who struggle to get up and cook for themselves, there are times you would rather go lazy than tired. We all deserve a break and pamper ourselves in whatever way we are used to – not cleaning the house, ordering food instead of cooking, lay down and have a movie marathon – yes, whatever!

Your old things are still there

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Your favorite stuffed toy and lovely pillow are still in your bedroom. Your good-old cabinet also moved in with you. Of course, for practicality, you don’t need to have everything brand new. There are things you can leave with your previous home but decided to take it with you. Why? Because you need that sense of comfort, belongingness and companion to a “whole new world” in which you don’t know anyone but your old things. These materials will also give you the vibes of the home of your “faraway previous home” in your “new home.” Nostalgia and tears are coming right up!

And of course, a lot of adventures!

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No explanations needed. It’s for you to discover yourself.

 

So we hope that you were able to see yourself in this basic independent living starter pack. What’s in yours?

FOUR SELLING FAUX PAS OWNERS COMMIT IN SELLING THEIR HOMES

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People who prefer to get the full profit of their home’s worth would rather sell their homes by themselves rather than entrust it through a broker and have to deal with pay cuts. And since shopping through the Internet has become a rather trendy thing where you can find even the rarest finds online, homeowners wishing to sell their homes have exploited this technological advancement to its maximum advantage. This remains to be a stiff reality even with the downturn in the real estate market, and more and more people think that they can do a better job of selling their homes than the pundits who have been in the industry for years and who have had far more experience than they do.

While selling your homes on your own is not exactly an impossible feat, you may find yourself disappointed with the slow pace or sale you may be getting owing to your inexperience and ineptness. Considering that most of you are novices when it comes to selling homes on your own, it can be easy to commit several faux pas when it comes to pricing our homes, but it is nonetheless, it is a mistake that can easily be rectified. However, before you go on selling your home on your own, it would be great to have an idea of which mistakes to avoid so that whether you are selling your Makati condo or your swanky apartment from uptown, you would be doing it right.

So if you are planning to sell your homes anytime soon, here are the common faux pas you should be avoiding:

1.) EMOTIONAL PRICING

One of the mistakes a homeowner commits in pricing his homes is emotional pricing where he prices his home based on nostalgia and sentiment rather than its real value. This is not necessarily a bad thing but if you are listing it at an exorbitant price for which the buyer will not be getting much value at, you will be disappointed with your lack of potential buyers. Homeowners have this propensity of viewing their property with emotional attachment and because of this, inflation in price –when experiences as a child are considered—will ensue. Do remember that although your memories may mean a lot to you and may mean something of value (may it be through your various decorative touches throughout the home), this is not necessarily true for your potential buyer, and they may not share the same sentiment. Price your home as if you are looking at it from a broker’s standpoint and not an owner’s.

2.) INSISTENCE IN NOT GETTING HELP

You may be selling your home on your own, but that does not mean you are selling your home entirely on your own. At the most, it means that you will do some or all of the work involved in finding a buyer, complete the transaction in the hopes of saving all of or part of an agent’s commission. But this does not mean you will disregard any sort of assistance that could potentially help you. Remember, in this age of technology sources of information and support are available almost immediately and at the click of a finger. If you do not take advantage of this, you will be putting yourself at a disadvantage. To be a savvy seller, you should know when to seek help when you need it.

3.) IMPROPER STAGING

Buyers can be very discerning and discriminating when it comes to buying homes considering that they have a plethora of houses to choose from. So with this in mind, you have to stage your home correctly in order to entice a potential buyer to buy from you. Impressing a buyer does not always take much as simple things such as paint, good flooring condition, cleanliness, uncluttered walls and well-lit rooms are already a few nondescript but imperative things that would impress a buyer. If you are unsure of the best way to stage your home for viewing perhaps hiring a professional would be best so that they can advise you on the changes you can make to not only attract buyers but keep them interested enough to make an offer.

4.) INSUFFICIENT PHOTOS

One thing you must remember when you are selling your home is that you are trying to attract potential buyers and hopefully have them make an offer. Considering this to be the case, you should be sure to put up adequate photos online that buyers seeking for homes to buy online would be able to do a virtual tour of your home—one that would eventually get them to see your property in person. Showcase your home at its best and choose the best photos to upload.