So maybe you have visited the beautiful Emerald Coast and you are thinking to yourself that I might want to buy a condo while I am out there. Seems like a pretty good investment. Well, these are
Top 8 Questions a Home Buyer Should Ask Before Writing an Offer
Dated: February 11 2020
Top 8 Questions a Home Buyer Should Ask Before Writing an Offer
There are well over 100 questions that could and maybe should be asked before getting to the point of writing an offer on your next home. In this episode we covered the top 8 questions that every home buyer should probably be asking their Real Estate Professional before writing an offer.
Is there an HOA to deal with?
An HOA can restrict what you put on your property and how you take care of your property. They do this in order to keep the entire neighborhood in strong order and keep prices up.
An HOA can be costly. Some are inexpensive. Andrew's first home had an HOA that was on $20.00 per year which is very affordable. While that was the case with him, some HOA's can be very costly, particularly on Condo's
How old are the main components of the home?
These can be pricey, especially right after potentially putting in a good amount down to your home. Nobody wants to incur a big cost like a reroofing of a home that they just purchased, not unless they had planned on it!
The main three components most people ask about are, the age of the roof, water heater and AC/Heather units.
A roof could cost anywhere from $5,000 on a small cottage to $20,000 and higher on a large 5,000 sq foot home. This can fluctuate even higher depending on the type of roof you decide to put down.
An AC/Heater can cost from $3,000 to $10,000 depending on the size of the home.
A water heater, in comparison is much cheaper, if done by a plumbers apprentice it can cost as little as $600, a plumber may charge about $1200 - $1500 for the same size unit.
How much is Home Owners Insurance going to cost?
This is a very easy thing that your Real Estate Professional can get quotes on before writing the offer. Now there are a lot of factors that go into a HOI quote, and a full inspection, wind mitigation and a variety of other inspections may be needed to lower the quote, having a best and worst case scenario idea of what it may cost is very beneficial.
HOI will also effect closing costs and monthly payment. This is imperative to a lot of would be home owners because being house poor is never a fun situation to be in.
How much are the utilities on this home?
Again, going in line with the previous statements, an overall picture of what you total living costs will be is very important to a lot of people. It could be a home in a great price point and the utilities can be through the roof (some pun intended) and makes the home not worthwhile over another home that might be a bit more expensive but more energy efficient.
What will closing costs look like on this home?
Certain loan types are $0 down payment but that does not mean that it is $0 at the closing table. Every loan is different but for the most part, closing costs typically range in the 2.5% to 3.5% of the purchase price. This varies in price ranges and in different states but here locally under the $1,000,000 price point, it is a fairly accurate range.
Don't fret if you don't want to pay closing costs assistance, it is very common in our local area to have the Seller pay for it. No money exchanges hands so it comes out of the Seller's proceeds at closing. This will come at a cost though, the Seller will be taking a hit on it so they will likely ask for a higher price to accomadate them paying costs.
Is this a good neighborhood?
This one is tricky for Realtor's because we follow a code of ethics, rules and laws that protect against discrimination (among many other things). We aren't technically supposed to answer our opinion on whether or not a neighborhood is safe.
We can, however, point you towards a few tools that will help. Here's an example of what it looks like at Trulia.com as suggested in the video - https://www.trulia.com/p/fl/fort-walton-beach/300-plymouth-ave-fort-walton-beach-fl-32547--2033358755#lil-crimeTab
Another great tool for this is CrimeReports.com
What do the Comparable Homes look like?
We want to make sure you are able to write an appropriate offer and not insult the Seller. An insulted Seller will likely counter back very hard, IF they respond to your offer at all.
Also, we don't want to over pay for a home either.
What inspections are we going to need?
This one can be tricky for a Real Estate Agent because we don't always know just by looking at the home what inspections it will need. Oftentimes, it takes a home inspector to go through with a general idea and give us other professionals to consult.
For homes that are 30 years or more, a 4 point inspections is normally suggested, and oftentimes mandantory in order to get home owners insurance.
Another popular inspection that we get on almost any home is call a Wind Mitigation. Here in Florida this inspection is essentially "How well will the home do in a hurricane or high wind situation" for lack of a better explanation.
Those are the Top 8 Questions that the Emerald Group would recommend for buying a home in our local area here. Of course there are so many more questions that may need to come up during this process. Just be open, and ask ask ask! There are no such things as stupid questions in Real Estate - we would rather have you ask than regret it later.
Keep in mind that whether or not you are going to utilize the Emerald Group as your Real Estate Team of choice, we do have a no obligation Buyer's Consultation where we will discuss the entire process of buying a home in our local area. This may not help you in another state but if you are planning on purchasing a home in our area of expertise, we can definitely help with the knowledge side of things!
Give us a call at 850-543-2260 if you have any questions or if you'd like to set up a consultation.
Andrew Iremonger started his Real Estate career shortly after leaving the United States Air Force in 2014. The qualities that the military instilled in him carried on in his work ethic. Just a few sho....
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