With today’s considerably lower Miami Beach real estate prices, the large inventory of foreclosures and bank owned property the question becomes more of what kind of property is worth investing in than anything else. For purposes of this article, we’ll focus on bank owned properties, also known as REO (real estate owned) property.
A home becomes real estate owned if it doesn’t find a buyer during a property auction. Since banks aren’t necessarily designed to function as Miami Beach real estate property-owners, they’re usually very eager to get rid of them which can result in considerable discounts. However since an REO is not the same thing as a foreclosure, lenders can still earn a profit from them so don’t expect as deep of a discount.
A perk of buying a Miami Beach real estate REO is that there’s much less of a risk of dealing with liens, taxes and other unforeseen costs that come with a foreclosure since lenders will take usually deal with them before the sale is closed. However an REO can still be in bad condition like a foreclosure so it remains important to get a home inspection or check the home out yourself, lenders are not at all obligated to make any repairs on the property but they will allow you to back out if something is seriously wrong.
Posted at 10:24:21 AM
Thursday, March 05, 2009
Examining the Interior of a Home
If you’ve been browsing through Miami Beach real estate on the internet, you’ve more than likely come across numerous resources thoroughly explaining how important it is that you carefully consider where the home is located, the values of neighboring homes, etc. If you’ve done your homework, perhaps it’s time to narrow down your assessment to the home you may soon be living in by giving the interior a meticulous examination.
Perhaps you’d like to start off with the electrical wiring. Depending on your familiarity, you may wish to leave this to a professional or have it done as part of the home inspection report, should you request one. Always check this part out regardless of whether the home was built ten years ago or five years ago.
The plumbing is a little easier. Leakage can often be discovered just by taking a look behind sinks since that’s the spot where mold has the best conditions for accumulating. A leaky sink could be an indicator of bad pipes and thus plumbing, something you likely want to bring to the appropriate person’s attention before signing off on the dotted line on your Miami Beach real estate purchase.
Not all homes come with an addict but if there is one, you may wish to make it your first stop. If you want to examine the roof, the attic is the best spot to do so. If there’s wood that shows wear and tear, this could lead to leakage later on.
Posted at 11:00:29 AM
Wednesday, November 26, 2008
Compiling Comparable Sales
With the advances in technology and the widespread availability of the World Wide Web, there is more real estate information available than ever. Realtors have a number of resources available to help them with their seller and buyer assistance efforts and among these, it’s important to have a good idea of average sales prices in any given neighborhood, officially known as comparable sales and often referred to simply as comps.
Depending on the state where the realtor is doing business, obtaining information on comps can be done by simply heading over to the local courthouse and browsing through public records or reading newspaper listings to get a glimpse of recent sales figures. However this method means that such services need to actually be provided in order to make use of them.
The most readily available resource is the internet since there are many websites available which can be used for finding comparable sales information while removing the need to do a lot of unnecessary and possibly fruitless legwork. Keep in mind though that there is no guarantee as to how current this information may be. A similar approach is to subscribe to service companies which can mail or offer this information via other means besides the internet. Even so, the same problems of encountering outdated information are still there.
The MLS can be extremely useful and if the person using it is already a licensed realtor then they have access to a wealth of information on multiple listings which is more often than not kept up to date.
At the end of the day however, perhaps the best way to have the sharpest knowledge on comps is to take the self research approach and focus on a certain neighborhood and staying abreast of sales.
Posted at 4:43:12 PM
Friday, October 31, 2008
Existing Home Sales Rose Nationally Last Month
While the economy seems bleak with the stock market fluctuating daily and a steady amount of major companies going bankrupt or merging, the real estate market seems to be headed down a different path. Month-after-month the real estate market has slight improvements. Experts think the worst declines in the real estate market have already past while the economy still has a while before it stabilizes.
Recent reports from the National Association of Realtors (NAR) show an increase in existing home sales. Home sales were up 5.5 percent with a total of 5.18 million units sold across the country in the month of September which was higher than the previous month by 1.4 percent. Lead economist for the NAR Lawrence Yun suggests this is part of “a sales turnaround which began in California several months ago…” and “is broadening now to Colarado, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri and Rhode Island”.
The cause of this influx of real estate business, according to NAR President Richard F. Gaylord is “low home prices and low interest rates”. The nearly thirty percent discounts in home prices in major cities and rural areas have attracted buyers back to the real estate market in certain areas of the country. Richard F. Gaylord is optimistic about recent gains and thinks the real estate market is on its way to recovery.
Lawrence Yun, while also optimistic about the recovery of the real estate market, warns of “market disruptions” on the road to real estate market recovery. The credit markets have a significant impact on the real estate market and as they experience tough times it may have averse effects on the real estate market. But that aside, the NAR is predicting that the worst for the real estate market is over and that it will recover sooner than the economy itself.
Posted at 10:53:28 AM
Friday, September 05, 2008
Global warming, damaging fuel emissions, they’re all more of a concern on people’s minds these days as they become more and more aware of their long term effects on the environment and how important it is to try and incorporate “green practices” into your daily lifestyle whether that means doubling up your recycling efforts or reducing the amount of time you spend sitting idly in traffic.
In real estate, many developers have taken into account how they too can make homes “greener” and many have made use of natural resources to create environmentally friendly condo buildings like Ten Museum Park which uses its glass design to allow tons of natural sunlight to come into the building, thus reducing the need to flip on artificial lights, at least during the day.
The Ten Museum Park condo is only a small part of a bigger picture. Its home, downtown Miami is recognized not only by its sweeping business and condo skyscrapers, but also the numerous and elaborate light displays that bring the city to new life during the evening. Obviously all this visual eye candy, while certainly nice to look at does not do the environment any favors. Thus, to reinforce the message of how important it is to turn off nonessential lights whenever possible, Ten Museum Park and all those other high rises in downtown Miami’s will turn off their own unimportant lights on March 29 in a global effort to encourage environmental awareness.
Regardless of whether you live in a Miami single family home or a luxury condo, the efforts required by you to help out the environment even a little are that simple: turn off lights when you leave a room, drop a plastic water bottle or soda can into a recycling receptacle instead of the trash. It may seem useless but it’s always good to know you’re doing your part in making the world you share with everyone else that much more pleasant.
hat require little to no repairs. Don’t get caught up in the fierce competition without having a limit of how far you’re willing to bid, always remember the winning bid is only a component of the other fees that follow. As you learn the ropes, you’ll eventually get a feel for how real estate auctions work and who knows, if you become good at it, they may become your preferred method of buying Florida real estate.
Posted at 2:50:44 PM
Tuesday, June 24, 2008
International Florida Real Estate Assistance
To some degree the foreclosure situation has transitioned from how to prevent foreclosures to how to get rid of the hundreds of foreclosure properties already available on the market. South Florida homes are among the highest in foreclosure filings, contributing to an already overcrowded housing glut. The answer to appeasing the situation may lie beyond the U.S. borders.
Strategic Real Estate Advisors is an asset management firm situated in London that plans to raise $1 billion dollars in order to purchase luxury property like Miami Beach oceanfront condos currently owned and being sold by the banks through the Florida Prime Residential Opportunity Fund.
Itâ€™s interesting to note that not only is Strategic Real Estate Advisors located outside of the United States, the majority of the funds which will go towards the purchase of all these luxury properties will be coming from well to do investors and funds located throughout Europe and the Middle East. Recent reports have consistently pointed towards international investors and buyers as integral towards maintaining interest in Florida property investments and sales.
Critics may see Strategic Real Estate Advisorsâ€™ initiative as ineffective since they wonâ€™t be making a profit. The firm actually plans to buy and then hold onto these properties for next six years or so, a move that may cost considerable funds as the market fluctuates but which should bring considerable profit by the time it decides to sell them off as a residential property investment or something else entirely.
Within a seven year timeframe home values and the real estate market in general will certainly be in much better shape and buying activity will likely have increased so in a sense Strategic Real Estate Advisors are providing a worthwhile short and long term solution. Is this just another flash in the pan or is it a viable strategy?
Posted at 12:30:39 PM
Wednesday, May 28, 2008
Homes Are Selling Again
Amidst the doom and gloom of housing market reports comes a recent report suggesting the real estate market is showing strong signs of life. In these tumultuous times it's easy for people to think that the economy is headed for recession or even a crash. Despite current market reports that suggest we are beginning to see slow signs of recovery there are still those who would rather build a bunker under their homes to prepare for an apocalypse then invest in real estate.
The last half dozen months have not seen much progress in the way of homes sold. The highest percentage of drop in home sales occurred during that period leading many to believe that the market would eventually begin to recoverâ€”and it did. In April homes sales increased slightly, which wasn't enough to ease all tensions in the housing market but enough to show that the market is on the right track to recovery.
Property value also rose slightly across the nation showing encouraging signs of the real estate market's enduring strength. Though the median home value is comparably low to just four years ago the fact that property value is stabilizing across the country is a sign that things will return to normalcy sooner than later. When property values experience steady rise it will be more practical for people to sell homes and to convince investors to buy homes.
So, how should one react to recent reports of trends reversing in real estate? Real estate transactions rising are a sign that demand for property is still alive. Prices are almost at a low enough level that many people sitting on the fence on whether or not to invest will soon become active. As sales increase, so will home values and soon real estate investments will become stable enough to return to business as usual.
Natural lighting is preferable in most cases, making a working area near a window ideal. In many instances, daylight hours are limited, so consider investing in a task light. Should it be impossible to set up a workspace near a window, there are light sources available that replicate natural light. When arranging lighting, remember that placing an overhead light directly above a computer screen or setting the screen opposite to a light source increases the glare and should be avoided. The office space should have ample lighting, while taking care to include the ability for the worker to control the lights intensity.
Equipment and Ergonomics
When picking out your office equipment, it is imperative that you focus on its function. For instance, you could choose a working table with nothing more than a lap drawer for supplies if you do not need more storage, or you might opt for a larger desk complete with drawers and space for storing files. It is recommended that you choose an office chair that supports the lower back, and keeps your elbows and knees at a 90-degree angle. Screens should be at eye level and arms length. There are plenty of desk organizers on which unattended tasks can be stored to prevent disorganized piles which impede a persons productivity.
You should choose office equipment that does not compromise on your overall safety and health. Serious long-term health problems can be avoided if you make your office space and equipment as ergonomic as possible right from the onset. Keeping in mind that you will be spending a lot of your time working, personalize your office space to what you would prefer and make it as friendly to your body as possible.
Whether youre trying to study for the MCAT, taking an online course, or just working from home, privacy cannot be overemphasized. Its crucial that you are able retreat to a private area, preferably with a door, to minimize distractions and interruptions. Though headphones can be a temporary solution, continual use of headphones tends to have diminishing returns as time goes on. You can also achieve a sense of privacy by the erecting divider walls. To further cut down on distractions, consider installing low-noise fans and air filters, which are less noisy than most.
One thing people often overlook is equipment cables. Consider talking to your office designer about integrating a way to hide cables that are not only an eyesore but also increase the likelihood of accidents. Adequate electrical outlets should also be included and the equipment layout left open for any alterations in the future. Ease of access to anything you will need as you work is essential. Should you be space-challenged, you could invest in all-in-one equipment to provide required functionality while occupying less space.
If youre running a business from home or using your home office for school and studying, make sure you make the space large enough to accommodate meetings with at least one other person.
When designing a home workspace, remember to work within your budget and purchase equipment that perfectly suits the size of your work space. Design the office area to reflect your >
In regards to condo occupancy rates, there are nearly 2 million people in Canada who made a condo their new home in 2016. Due to the newfound demand for pre-construction condos in Canada, the number of construction projects in the country has also risen accordingly. Here, our focus will be on new condos for sale in North York, and why you should consider investing in pre-construction condos in Canada.
What is a condo?
A condo is a dwelling or building that has been divided or subdivided into multiple housing units. Each unit within the building is then sold off on an individual basis to individual investors or owners. Every owner within the condominium complex has a share of land ownership upon which the condo was erected.
Reasons to Invest in a Pre-Construction Condo
One of the chief benefits of investing in a pre-construction condo is that you will have an opportunity to invest less money initially, while also getting more for your money in the future. In other words, if you decide to invest in a condominium during the pre-construction phase, then you will be able to maximize your return on investment.
The purchase price for a pre-construction condo will be lower than the current price of a condo that has already been fully built. Once the pre-construction condo is finalized, you will be able to reap the benefits of your investment and patience rather quickly.nbsp;
While there is some risk involved in investing in a project that has yet to be finished, more often than not, the benefits mitigate any risks that are involved. Another advantage of investing in a pre-construction condo is that there is very little maintenance involved.
Of course, poor craftsmanship, which may involve cutting corners to cut costs, may force you to make repairs quickly, which is why it is important to perform the necessary due diligence to ensure that you are getting quality for your investment.
Instant equity is yet another benefit of investing in a pre-construction condo, as you will get the opportunity to enjoy instant equity as soon as you invest. That means that even before construction takes place once you have the required paperwork, the condo is as good as yours.
Furthermore, you can also enjoy some unique tax benefits by investing in a pre-construction condo. For example, did you know that only 50 of all capital gains are taxable in this country? You will be able to deduct quite a bit of your costs from your taxes, including but not limited to, unit depreciation, property taxes, and even mortgage interest.
You will also be able to enjoy an extended deposit structure by investing your hard-earned cash into a new pre-construction condo project. In other words, the deposit, which may range from 15 to 20, will usually be spread out. Also, it should be noted that you can own a pre-construction condo and not have to worry about it being shown on your credit bureau as well.nbsp;
Thanks in part to the extended deposit structure that is involved in pre-construction condo projects, you will have ample time to save your money. The time it will take to complete the project, which may take several years in some cases, will also allow you to save enough money to purchase without any financial issues on your end.
In addition, if you are worried that all of your money will be tied up into the initial purchase cost, then you can rest assured that you wont have to worry about investing in any renovations for quite some time. Given the fact that the condo is brand new, you likely wont have to worry about having to renovate the unit for at least a decade.
This is in stark contrast to many older condo units, some of which have been occupied for several decades. In the unlikely event that you do notice something wrong with the new unit, you can call the builders to notify them that something is structurally wrong. More often than not, your builders will be more than happy to rectify any structural issues free of charge.
Investing in a Pre-Construction Condo
As can be seen, there are many benefits to investing your money in a pre-construction condo in Canada. Given the fact that even a common townhouse can cost upwards of one million dollars in many parts of Ontario, more and more people have opted for the far more affordable solution, which is investing in a condo project instead.
Monica Benoit is a blogger in Toronto.nbsp;She is currently working as a community manager fornbsp;Your Condos. She has graduated with honors from the University of British Columbia with a dual degree in Business Administration and Creative Writing.
You dont have to rip out everything and start over. Its easy enough to make some simple enhancements. A general rule of thumb is to spend 5 to 10 of the value of your home on landscaping improvements. You can reduce these costs by doing some of the work yourself.
Here are five landscaping trends sure to increase the value of your home.
1. Clean It Up
Over the years, our yards get overgrown. Like us, they need regular haircuts. The first task? Remove any dead or wilted trees and bushes and replace them with drought-resistant, native plants, or create a mulch bed in their place. Be sure to prune overgrown trees and shrubs, and cut away low branches. Remove old rusted metal edging and install new metal or plastic edging around areas where the grass meets rocks or mulch. Be sure to use rounded edging to keep pet paws safe.
2. Keep It Low Maintenance
You want a yard that works for you, not one youll have to spend hours working on. A few simple tips can make your yard easy to maintain.
Plant perennial flowers that will return every year. Install a sprinkler system or automated soaker hoses. Cover more areas with pavers or hardscape to cut down on mowing time. Avoid messy trees that drop leaves, needles, and berries. Consider arborvitae trees that can grow up to 50 feet tall, need little pruning, and stay green year-round.
3. Grow a Privacy Fence
Watching your neighbors parade around their backyard in their pajamas on a Saturday morning is less than ideal. Create some privacy by planting trees or shrubs that keep your views inside your yard. Choose native plants within your plant hardiness zone that are easier to maintain and need less water. Buy bigger plants rather than waiting for the smaller ones to mature enough to create a privacy fence. This way youll need fewer plants and save time digging in the yard. Pro tip: Vary the types of plants to avoid losing them all to the same type of disease or pest. Stagger different kinds of plantings, such as deciduous shrubs, evergreens, and perennial grasses, in small groupings to create a natural privacy fence. For the prospective buyer, variety offers attractive sightlines and a greater variety of heights and colors.
4. Bring Your Indoors Outside
Once youve established some privacy, youre ready to create an outdoor oasis. If your budget allows, install an outdoor kitchen with a built-in grill, refrigerator, and a TV to help keep the party going into the backyard. Add comfortable seating with fluffy cushions for cozying up to a good book on a warm, sunny day. Close in your outdoor space in a gazebo or pergola, which serves to frame the open-air room while offering shade. Adding outdoor-rated carpet and throw pillows will create an inviting indoor feeling outside, perfect for entertaining on a Saturday evening or for sipping coffee on a Sunday morning.
5. Create a Focal Point
Your yard is like any room inside your home. Consider a focal point that immediately draws the eye. A koi pond, Zen garden, fountain, or an outdoor fireplace are also great gathering places for guests.nbsp;
Fashioning your backyard and lawn into an appealing and well-kept retreat expands the "liveable" space in your home. Think of it as an investment. Youre adding an extra room to your home, without adding additional walls. Creating a greener, more trendy landscape will pay off when its time to sell, by putting more green in your pocket.
Rose Stanford is a former real estate agent who enjoys fixing up and staging older homes. Her specialty is renovating backyards and patios.