What You Need to Know When House Hunting

Make things easier with a checklist. Whether you are looking at bungalows in a subdivision in Bulacan or a townhouse in Quezon City, narrowing your options when choosing your next abode will make the selection process easier and quicker.

When house hunting, buyers often focus on the exterior and interior design rather than the functionality of the structure. Others prioritize the price of the house and lot because of the economic and financial aspects. Having a checklist will help balance what’s important and what is necessary.

It’s easy to get swept by the newest trends in architecture and real estate. House agents and brokers can be very persuasive. With a checklist in hand, you can stay right on track. Below are few pointers to guide you in completing the list.

 

Source of electricity

volt, resistor, electricity, power source, home

Electricity and gas should be the first thing on your list. Some important questions to answer are:

  • How many sockets are in each room? Are there conveniently positioned?
  • Do all electrical sockets work?
  • Are there any interferences to electricity sources?
  • What alternative sources can you use in case the main power goes off?

If all of these are answered clearly by the seller or agent then it’s worth to consider the house. But other than the central electricity source, it’s worth noting how gas can be utilized in the space. Where can you store the gas cylinder? Does the house rely on LPG or petroleum to run the central heating? Is the heating system working properly? These things are equally important as they can also save your wallet.

 

Water source and plumbing

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When you are planning to move to an area with a limited supply of water, ask where the water came.

Live in a place that is comfortable, not worry about water rotations and rationing. Do some research and survey the area if their supply is stable. It may not be an issue now, but it can be in the future. Look years ahead before settling in a location.

As soon as you find no interruption with water supply, check the plumbing. Inspect the fixtures and pipes for noises, leaks and weak spots. Rusty pipes and fixtures are more likely to appear in aged houses, so pry the previous homeowner of the house’s history. Consulting a professional plumber for a second opinion is also advisable.

Hot water and bathtubs are additional features in Filipino homes, but newly-built houses often have these. Make sure the water heater still works properly and is connected to all water lines. The bathtub shouldn’t be clogged and the bathroom should be well-ventilated. It better to have a bathroom with a window. If that isn’t the case, choose one with an exhaust fan.

 

Lot and Surrounding Area

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Take into consideration the land area of your property – yard and side gutter included. The house might check everything on the list but if the gutters and drains are clogged, just forget it. It may cost you more because you did not consider the water damages caused by the blocked waterways.

If you’re on the scrimping side, consider the spread of the yard and the garden work. The lot may have a landscape that is high maintenance. The yard may have expensive turf that needs water more than your family does. Do you really need those? Think about it.

When scouring the exteriors, watch out for signs of decay and rot in woodwork.

Consequently, the surrounding area and neighborhood play a huge part in your everyday life. Living close to the places you frequent (school and work place) and facilities like hospitals, banks, and retail stores make life easier.

Communities accessible through different modes of transportation are much ideal than places exclusive for private vehicles. Best of all, choose a location that fits you and your family’s lifestyle.

Remember, a safe community is always a priority.

If you’ve been to a couple of houses visits, take note of the details that fit the details listed above. The next time you view a house, bring the list and compare if they have the potential to be your new home. Buying a property is a decision that should be hastened, so come with an open mind, inspect the structure thoroughly and compare your notes. Do not hesitate to ask questions about the house. Most of all, trust your judgment on deciding the perfect home.

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Homebuying 101: Top 5 Secrets Your Realtor is Keeping From You

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When it comes to home buying, hiring a real estate agent will always be an advantage. Perhaps, some of you are planning to do all the work to save you from any commission rates, but for most home investors, going solo might not be a good idea. It does not matter if you want to invest in pre-selling condo in Manila, you do not want to end up committing costly mistakes.

Although realtors play a significant role in the home buying process, there are just some things they hide from us – either they just don’t know how to say it, or they simply just do not want us to know. However, keep in mind that without proper communication between you as the buyer and your realtor, there might be some misunderstandings and complications in the long run. That is why, to give you some ideas, we list down some things most realtors won’t tell you about.

  1. The agent’s commission is negotiable

While some people believe that agent’s commission rate is a 50/50 between the seller’s agent and the buyer’s agent, sometimes, other realtors would demand higher rates than the others. Although commission rates would depend on both parties, what you do not know that it can be negotiated. However, if you want to deal with homeowners who do not want to work with a buyer’s agent, then there’s no reason for you to carry the burden alone. Moreover, it won’t cost you if you want and decide to engage with the services the real estate agent can offer.

2. The agent has little control

Perhaps, you think that realtors can do anything for you to achieve your dream home or find a rightful buying of your home, but what you do not know that they only have a little control of the situation. Yes, they can help you achieve a desirable outcome, but there is certain process for you to take. Keep in mind that real estate agents do not have any hold of what’s going to happen. For as long as they do what they need to do, then they will definitely help you achieve that matter.

3. You can’t afford this property

A real estate agent can help you buy or invest a house. But if you are not financially prepared for it, then your agent might have a hard time offering you a good deal. As a home investor, you also have to remember that agents are just there to help, guide and assist you with the transaction you made. However, they can’t help you when it comes to financial matters. It is your responsibility to provide such for any monetary needed.

Before anything else, you have to assess yourself on whether or not you can afford to invest in a real estate. If so, then you can proceed to the next step which is the transactions. And another thing, you should also make sure that you have a real budget for it for as not to face financial problems later on.

4. People are petty over refrigerators

Whether you are aware of it or not, there are home investors who would definitely be interested when you have good appliances at home, especially when it comes to a refrigerator. This attracts the buyer since the fridge falls into a gray area, where it can also be a deciding factor of a homebuyer on whether or not the fridge will stay or goes with the seller. That only means, make sure to impress your potential buyer with the appliances you include in your house.

5. Do not ask your real estate agent about race or ethnicity

Asking out from curiosity might not be a bad thing at all. However, keep in mind that it would definitely be unethical and unprofessional when you ask your agent about their race or ethnicity. Before you ask, you should consider their feelings if they are going to be offended or not. Also, never ask them about it especially when you are in the middle of the transaction. This kind of action is definitely rude on their part.

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Four Common Questions About Philippine Real Estate

 

 

Owning a home is a keystone of wealth… both financial affluence and emotional security. ~Suze Orman

One of the most crucial aspects when it comes to buying real estate in any part of the world is to know your legal rights. This applies true for house and lot buyers Philippines. It makes potential homebuyers more vigilant about their real estate purchases and aware whether the contract they are signing has legal color. Additionally, it would help prospective buyers weed out unscrupulous people such as scammers and unlicensed agents.

However, most Filipinos are lefty unaware of what their rights as a buyer which would render them vulnerable to bad deals and underhanded transactions which is why it would very much benefit them to have a general knowledge of our local laws.

The Philippines has an excellent set of legislation that would protect buyers from bad real estate agreements. Instead of the usual jargon found in real estate law books, this article aims to make it clearer to its readers as regards their legal rights as a homebuyer and a homeowner by elaborating on the most common questions about the Philippine real estate.

1.) Do foreign spouses or family members have the legal capacity to acquire property in the Philippines?

Unless they are renting a place such as in one of the condominium units for rent, the law is explicit when it comes to foreigners owning land and property in the Philippines. It has been stated that only Filipino citizens are allowed to buy real estate property in the Philippines regardless of whether such property is a condo or a home.

The rationale for this law is to keep Philippine lands from transferring ownership to foreigners lest we get overrun by properties owned by foreign nationals. However, foreign nationals can own property through co-ownership with his or her Filipino spouse or if the foreigner owns a corporation or an ownership where sixty percent of it is Filipino owned.

2.) What is a deed of sale and what are my duties as regards this document?

This crucial piece of document is essentially your legal proof of purchase. In essence, it indicates the transfer of property between the seller and buyer and shows that it has legally transpired. As a homebuyer, you should authenticate the document and have it notarized and recorded in the registry of deeds. After which, a homebuyer ould need to pay for transfer tax, registration fees, documentary stamp tax and other fees.

3.) What are my options when dealing with an unlicensed agent?

Before buying any property and dealing with an agent, it is best to check if the agent is registered with the Professional Regulatory Board of Real Estate Service. Unfortunately, there is not much recourse in dealing with an unlicensed agent apart from filing a fraud charge in the same manner as you would when you file a crime report.

4.) What are my rights as a buyer?

When it comes to property sales agreement, the rights of a homebuyer are essentially two things which are:

1.) The right to demand the developer to deliver the title of the unit or property upon full payment; and

2.) The right to be reimbursed with the amount you have paid which would include the amortization payments.

In essence, this would mean that it would be illegal for the developer to forfeit any installment payments in favor of the owner or the developer himself. Both laws are reflected in Presidential Decree No. 957- Subdivision and Condominium Buyers Protective Decree.

Are You Sure You Want To Sell Your Home?

We’ve all heard about buying and selling a property. There are even homebuyers who make it as one of their source of income – they invest in a particular property then sell it in a reasonable price. Well, it is also their way of earning extra money. Of course, who would not want that when it is on your advantage?

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Selling a home is not like selling your closet online. Well, if you are thinking about selling your home, there are actually a lot of things that you have to consider before deciding to sell it to a potential buyer. Of course, careful planning on what are you going to do with the property that you are about sell is also a must.

Although, you might be decided that you want to sell your property, the real question is – how ready are you to sell your home? Are there any things that you forgot to include before selling it? Well, those are some of the question that you must ask before you decide.

If you are not certain, you are not ready

As we all know that selling is not like selling your stuff online. We are talking about selling your property and it needs to have some of your time for you to think whether or not you want to pursue the selling. However, if you have a second thought on selling it, then don’t.

The tendency when you decide to sell your home without any assurances that you really want to sell it, you might regret your decision later on. Or perhaps, there might be some problems that will arise while in the process of the transactions. If you find yourself struggling with the process, don’t list your home just yet.

Once you list, the clock starts ticking

Selling your property is not that easy. Of course, as a seller, you have to wait until there will be some potential homebuyer who would like to buy your home. It may take you weeks or even months before someone will official buy your home.

Moreover, if you decide to put your property on the list, there are so many potential buyers who want to invest in your property. However, you also have to be keen in observing who is deserving to have your home.

You can plan for the market, not time the market

There are actually a lot of reasons why some homeowners wants to sell his/her property. Some of them might needed some money while some of the homeowners need to move to another home since it is far from their new work and/or school. Either way, they are still decided to sell their property to the market.

However, whatever reasons that you have, you also have to know and consider the market conditions. You have to know that not all that you want to achieve can be get through your target market. Well, not all the time that you can achieve what you want, you also have to consider what kind of property your target market would want to have and/or buy.

Real estate transactions happen all year long

As I’ve said a while ago, selling your property would take time. It can be sold in weeks, months or even years. Well, some of the most successful sales happen when the inventory is low yet there are still buyers who still want to invest.

If you really want to sell your home, you have to have a sales plan months in advance. Never list your home before you (or the home) are ready. Moreover, if you are emotionally attached to your home yet listing it at a high price or not making the necessary improvements can sabotage the ability to sell it.

If you are one of those people who want to sell their homes and/or properties, proper knowledge on how to sell a particular property to your target market is also a must. It is a big no for you to immediately sell it without any proper guidance on how the market works. Also, if you are really decided, might as will hire some real estate professionals for you to have a smooth and successful transaction in selling your home.