10 things you absolutely MUST consider before buying or selling a house.

     Purchasing a home is usually the most important decision the average american makes in his/her life time, followed directly by the decision of selling a home! 

     To add stress to this important decisions, we are seeing signs of a hot market (Specially in places like my area of the Raleigh/Durham Real Estate Market). Which is affecting first-time home buyers by pricing them out and not leaving much wiggle room in listings! 


     Per request, in this post, I've compiled a list of tips that can benefit both first-time home buyers and sellers in this current uphill real estate market. They range from broad topics like things everyone should know before selling or buying a house, to more specific subjects like how to spot an appreciating subdivision or what is the best area in your home to renovate before listing it when it comes to resale value.

Here Are My Most Recommended 10 Things You Absolutely MUST Consider Before Buying Or Selling A House.

Is buying a home always better than renting a home?

     In short: YES! 

     You probably hear it all the time, "If you are renting, you are throwing money down the drain!". And I couldn't agree with this more. 

     Purchasing a home gives you the opportunity to live in it, make upgrades, make it your own, then turn it around a sell it for whatever it has appreciated for. As a real estate investor in the Raleigh area, I could not emphasize the importance of owning your home even more. If you have the ability of purchasing a home, cash or financing, do it!  


     Now... to every rule there is an exception, of course. It all depends in your specific area as well. If you are in a situation where you would be struggling a home, and you are on the wall about making a decision, depending on your area it could be smarter for you to simply rent until you get your financials in order. 

Is "location, location, location" really that important? 

     You hear it and see it everywhere, and it is absolutely true! 

     When it comes to buying or selling a house, the location is going to be the most influential factors of them all. Depending on where you are looking to buy or where your current home is, your price range will variate dramatically.


     Be careful though, don't just buy into a good location because of the hype! Research shows that home values in so-called "Hot" areas appreciate way more slowly than in other neighborhoods that are "Not so hot" nearby. So If you are house hunting, keep in mind that you might find a better deal, that will yield more appreciation in the future, in areas AROUND the hot neighborhoods.

Is buying the ugly duckling in the best neighborhood a shrewd idea?

     This is a common myth in the world of real estate.


     The trust is that the worst home (usually the cheapest) in the greatest neighborhood, will not appreciate as quickly as the rest. It is all about conformity when it comes to appealing to buyers, nobody wants to have the ugliest house in the neighborhood, even if they are getting a discount!  

When is the best time to sell my home? 

     On average, throughout the nation, the best time to list your home is in march. It will vary a little bit depending on climate too, if you live in an area with warmer climate, the best time to list will be earlier in March. For colder climates, it will get pushed out towards mid-April. Beginning of fall is also a great time to list. 

     Potential sellers will wait for the majority of listings on the market to calm down down a bit towards the end of spring to pop up on the market, the best time for a buyer to look is a couple of weeks after that.

Does having a male or female Realtor really make a difference? If so, which is better?

     Not to be sexist, but something that needs to be addressed! To be honest, to me, gender doesn't really matter. It's all about the agents' skill set!

     Although, some data suggest that if you want to purchase a house, a female real estate agent will be more willing to negotiate harder and close the deal faster.

     On the other hand, if selling your current home is what you want, research says that you may be better off listing with a male real estate agent, who will get you closer to your asking price.

     I have heard that men tend to be a bit more stubborn so they do better at keeping the original asking price, and that women on average sell homes faster because they’re more willing to negotiate. Now, how true is this? do you agree? disagree? 


     This may sound silly, but from experience, I can tell you that some times a street name can help the sale! The more unique or exciting the name is, the better! I.e Fast lane, Thunder Road, Rocky Road, Tennis Court (See what I did there ;) ), will do better than average names!

     A home on Abbey road will sell for more than a home on Abbey street... If you are a fan of the Beatles you will know why.


     Also, of your address ends in a  "way," "court" or "lane," your house may be valued higher than a house on a "street" or a "Boulevard."

Will re-finishing my basement increase my home's value?

     The answer is: Maybe. 

     Sellers like to think that renovating their basement will increase their home's value dramatically. The problem is that not all buyers necessarily care for a basement.

     Also, those who do want a basement may want to use it for something different, if you turn your basement into a movie theater, the buyers may rather use the space as a gym, your theater would be hurting you more than helping you in that case! 

     I personally would rather add a story instead of renovating my basement. Also, investing some money in proper staging will definitely pay off. 

When it comes to bang for your buck, is it better to renovate the bathrooms or the kitchen? 

     Many may have a different opinion, but from experience, I would say that renovating the Kitchen is the best improvement you can make to your home. Although not every buyer is going to have the same taste in upgrades as you will, most will appreciate an updated kitchen more than a dated one.  


     Invest in improving the kitchen, but don't go overboard. Also, focus on little finishing touched around the house and you’ll get a much better return on your investment!

Numbers matter, in every way! 

     Numbers matter in real estate, even aesthetically! 

     For example: Stay away from the 666! People generally see 666 as a negative number, and this could impact you if your ask price has "666" somewhere in it! 

     Also, make an offer look cool by adding the property address number to your offer. So, if the property is 234 Collingdale ave, offer something like $110,234. This all may sounds very silly but things like these may make your offer stand out!

How do I know what neighborhoods will appreciate the most?

     Proximity to a coffee shop! 


     This is true! Research says that being walking distance to a coffee shop will help your house appreciate higher than a similar home in a similar area with out a coffee shop

     Next time you are out house hunting, make sure there is a starbucks near by! 


     These tips may be different from some you may have heard before, but that is the intent! If everybody is already applying the same techniques to getting their house noticed, they wouldn't have much of an impact, would they?

     When it comes to buying or selling real estate, the key is to think outside of the box, and stand out! Specially in a hot market, you want to make sure you are using as much leverage as you can, even if this is adding the street number to your offer!  

     Do you agree with these tips? Can you name some other tips that may help first time home buyers or sellers? 

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