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Boomerang Home Buyers: 4 Things to Consider Before Stepping Back into Homeownership
By Peta-Gay
June 3, 2016

Whether you've gone back to renting for the sake of money saving or recently downsized to a more compact space, the idea of owning a home can be a big responsibility that may require more than you're willing to give. If you're considering jumping back into the fold of home ownership, here are a few things to contemplate before re-entering the market.

Is It Affordable?

Many people avoid home ownership for a long time because of the high cost of a down payments and the associated property taxes and maintenance fees, but it can be easy to forget these extras if you've been out of the game. Instead of being blindsided, sit down and determine these additional costs before putting an offer down on anything.

Is It Really What You Want?

With all of the conversation around the market that says it's best to buy now, it can seem like having a home is a necessity for a secure financial future. However, if home ownership is something you feel pressure to do, it may not be worth such a sizeable purchase. Instead of jumping in, ensure you've determined what such a significant investment means to you first.

Does Home Ownership Match Your Lifestyle?

It's easy to be aware of the financial benefits of buying a home up front, but simply because it may suit your pocketbook doesn't mean it serves the life you're living now. You should first consider the things in your life that have changed, as a new home may not have all the nearby amenities you're used to and there may also be a lot of maintenance and yard work you'll have to take on.

Is It A Good Investment?

If you've decided that delving into another home is really the right thing for you, you'll want to make sure it's the kind of purchase that's really going to be fruitful down the road. It can be easy to buy in a popular neighborhood or by the beach, but instead of going for what's right now, consider communities that will be popular in the future as this may maximize your investment potential.

Many people make a second foray into home ownership for a reason, but it's worth being clear on what your expectations really are so you don't end up with an investment you're not interested in holding onto. If you're currently considering your housing options, you may want to contact one of our trusted real estate professionals for more information.

About the Blogger - Peta-Gay Lewis, MRP®, PSA® is Founder & Principal of Property Locators, LLC™. She is a licensed Property Manager & REALTOR in DC, MD, and VA with Douglas Realty, LLC (8096 Edwin Raynor Blvd Suite C Pasadena, MD 21122). Her contact information is 202 683-0158 (c), 410 255-3690 (o) or agent@propertylocatorsllc.com

How to Market Your Home to Renters Online
By Peta-Gay
June 23, 2016

Many people think that marketing their home is best left to the realtor since they have the expertise and knowledge to succeed at selling. However, there are plenty of ways that you and your realtor can approach the marketing for your home for an even more positive impact. If you've made the decision to put your home on the market as a rental, here are a few tips so you can be sure to find the right renters. 

Make Use Of Social Media

Sites like Craigslist have long been popular for finding a place to rent, but in the times of social media, there are plenty of other ways to reach people who are looking for apartments or homes. Instead of having to rely on traditional means of marketing, take to Twitter or Facebook to post about your home rental and include a few pictures with a brief description. Not only will this reach all your friends and followers, it will ensure that they can pass the information along too.

Create A Home Website

There are many old-school means of marketing a home to interested parties, but the tricks don't necessarily change when it comes to finding an ideal renter. If you're entrusting your home to the reliability of renters, a professional website with a respectable realtor is still one of the best means of attracting the right crowd. With a selection of professional photos and a complimentary description, you should have a few good options in no time.

Splurge On Professional Pictures

There's a reason that professional photography is expensive, but when it comes to marketing your home online, a good picture is one of the best tools you have in finding your audience. Because a professional photographer knows all the small stuff about lighting and accentuating your home's best features, they'll be able to provide you with the kind of images that are sure to capture attention. In addition, a professional photograph can go a long way towards getting the rental price you're asking for.

There was a time when renters walked the neighborhood to find the best rental options, but with so much of the search having gone online, there are other ways to market your home to potential candidates. If you're planning on purchasing a second home and are putting your own up for rent, you may want to contact one of our trusted real estate professionals for more information. 

About the Blogger - Peta-Gay Lewis, MRP®, PSA® is Founder & Principal of Property Locators, LLC™. She is a licensed Property Manager & REALTOR in DC, MD, and VA with Douglas Realty, LLC (8096 Edwin Raynor Blvd Suite C Pasadena, MD 21122). 

Mortgage Fraud: 3 Common Scams to Avoid
By Peta-Gay
June 24, 2016

There are many ins and outs involved in securing a mortgage lender, and as a result there are many offers and options out there which are only around to take advantage of prospective homebuyers. If you're on the lookout for a home and are trying to wade through all the details successfully, here are some things you may want to be aware of.

The Perfect Rental Deal

If you've ever rented an apartment in the past, it's entirely possible that you've run into deals on Craigslist where a sizeable, stunning property is advertised at a very modest price. While scams like this are quite common when it comes to rentals, they also occur when scammers copy MLS listing and pretend to be an agent facilitating a real estate deal. There's no sure way to avoid scams like these, but ensure you don't hand over money or sign anything unless you're 100% certain whom you're dealing with.

Lenders Who Push The Envelope

Reliable lenders will be upfront with you when explaining the details associated with your mortgage, so it's important to be cautious if you end up dealing with someone who asks you to exaggerate or embellish your financial claims. The only way to make a solid investment is to be honest about your financial situation, and anyone trying to inflate your income and the price you can pay is only hoping to gain a piece of the profit for themselves.

Investment Speakers And Seminars

With so much information out there, many people look for courses that will make them aware of the basics of investing so that they can do some of the legwork on their own. Courses like these can be useful in many cases but if they happen to be sponsored by an organization and are charging high attendance fees, there's a good chance they're trying to endorse their own services and may not be providing the most accurate information. Instead of guessing for yourself, you may want to read up on the basics and follow up with a trusted lender for any additional questions.

There's a lot involved in delving into the real estate market, and that's why it's important to watch out for the kinds of things that may not be serving your best interest. If you're currently looking for a lender and are planning on buying a home soon, you may want to contact one of our trusted real estate professionals for more information.

About the Blogger - Peta-Gay Lewis, MRP®, PSA® is Founder & Principal of Property Locators, LLC™. She is a licensed Property Manager & REALTOR in DC, MD, and VA with Douglas Realty, LLC (8096 Edwin Raynor Blvd Suite C Pasadena, MD 21122). Her contact information is 202 683-0158 (c), 410 255-3690 (o) or agent@propertylocatorsllc.com

Ready to Be a Landlord? Important Considerations Before Renting Your Home
By Peta-Gay
June 27, 2016

Whether you're going away on an extended vacation or considering downsizing into a smaller place, the popularity of websites like Airbnb has led many people to believe that there's a lot of money in home rental. However, before putting your home on the market, it's important to be aware of some of the factors that go into having a rental property. It may seem like extra money, but it's the small details that can make it a more complicated process.

Is It A Short Term Solution

Many people plan on putting their home on the market for a short duration of time, but if you're only planning on renting for 6 months or a year, it may not be as financially lucrative as you think. While tax breaks can go along with rental properties, the money you make off of this kind of investment is taxable so if you're not in it for a slightly longer haul, you may not see the financial boon you're looking for.

What Are You Willing To Deal With?

For those who are planning to put a home on the market, they still need some place to live, and this can mean that a certain amount needs to be made each month for the costs of having two homes even out. Before putting any serious considerations into this, ensure that you know it's financially feasible. It's entirely possible that you won't have renters for certain periods of time and you could also run into problems with the renters you find, so you should sit down and put pen to paper to consider the investment potential.

Have You Considered The Maintenance?

Out of sight is often out of mind, but if you have a renter, you're responsible for anything that goes wrong in the home. From small maintenance duties to sizeable but necessary overhauls, there are many things you're legally obligated to do as a landlord and you'll need to be prepared to take on these responsibilities. Since it will be the duty of the owner, in the event you don't want to do it, you'll have to hire a contractor who will be able to handle the work for you.

Having a house as a second property may seem like an ideal investment, but this can require you to take on the responsibilities of a landlord and you may even have to deal with problematic rental situations. If you're searching for an additional property in the near future or a property manager, you may want to contact one of our trusted real estate professionals for more information.

About the Blogger - Peta-Gay Lewis, MRP®, PSA® is Founder & Principal of Property Locators, LLC™. She is a licensed Property Manager & REALTOR in DC, MD, and VA with Douglas Realty, LLC (8096 Edwin Raynor Blvd Suite C Pasadena, MD 21122). Her contact information is 202 683-0158 (c), 410 255-3690 (o) or agent@propertylocatorsllc.com

3 Things to Consider Before Buying a Vacation Home Abroad
By Peta-Gay
June 28, 2016

The call of fancy vacation locations and the additional earnings that can come along with this type of home may appeal to many homebuyers, but a lot of time and money can go into maintaining a second property. If you're currently considering a vacation home for your own use or as a potential investment, here are a few factors to consider before jumping into the fray of a long distance home.

Will You Use It Enough?

A home in a far-off place can be a great means of having a place to visit each year, but one of the problems with this type of home is that it often doesn't get enough use to justify all of the associated costs. While things like timeshares can minimize this problem, buying your own home may mean that you'll be compelled to visit quite frequently and you may feel the need to commit to one option when it comes to vacation time.

Do You Want To Worry About Maintenance?

Like any home, a property in a foreign country is going to have both large and small maintenance issues that need to be fixed here and there, and this can be hard to get to if you live a 5-hour plane ride away. Maintenance isn't necessarily a deal breaker when it comes to a second home, but you'll want to determine if you're willing to do the work when you're spending time there or whether you'd rather hire someone who will do all of the little fix-ups for you.

Is It Really Affordable?

When going into an investment as significant as a home for pleasure, it can be easy for people to be obscured by what they want and not what they need, but this sometimes means people will take a financial risk.  Instead of throwing caution to the wind, ensure you sit down and determine the monthly costs, maintenance fees and property taxes of your potential property. Determining how this lines up with all your other debts will help you decide if the purchase is really feasible.

Sunny beaches and trendy cities may seem like a foolproof investment, but it's important to consider the cost effectiveness and all of the maintenance required before you commit to a second home abroad. If you're currently looking for a home in an exotic locale, you may want to contact one of our trusted real estate professionals for more information.

About the Blogger - Peta-Gay Lewis, MRP®, PSA® is Founder & Principal of Property Locators, LLC™. She is a licensed Property Manager & REALTOR in DC, MD, and VA with Douglas Realty, LLC (8096 Edwin Raynor Blvd Suite C Pasadena, MD 21122). Her contact information is 202 683-0158 (c), 410 255-3690 (o) or agent@propertylocatorsllc.com