Buying a home is one of life’s sweet milestones. Whether you got tired of your one bedroom apartment, or you just got married and decided it is time to settle down, the home buying process can be exciting and stressful at the same time.
Though shopping for homes is definitely fun, buyers have to navigate through many complexities they’ve never faced before. Luckily, we’ve done this before!
Here are some of the things to keep in mind when buying a home.
Location, location, location
One thing you can not change about your home is the location. Therefore the most important things to keep in mind when house hunting are: location, location, location.
Your home should have a monthly mortgage payment you’re comfortable with. Thus, choose a home within your price range. That’s why, for most buyers, the home’s price tag is a make-or-break consideration.
In today’s marketing you should be prepared to negotiate. Because In a highly competitive market bidding wars are common. But don’t break the bank on what you can ultimately afford.
Home style and size
You want to be content with the layout and square footage of the home you choose. Remember that your needs may change as your household grows, and if or when family members are added, so carefully consider short- and long-term size needs as well as the practicality of the floor plan. Also, be well-informed about future expansion or restrictions on your home. Such as zoning, and local ordinances. In addition, districts subject to Mello-Roos, or located in a Historic Preservation Overlay Zone (HPOZ) need to be taken in consideration as well.
Amenities inside and around the home matter a lot. From the type of flooring and quality of kitchen appliances to the lighting fixtures, bathroom finishes, and backyard features.
Try to focus on expensive features that would be harder for you to add on your own after purchasing. Amenities that can be easily changed or replaced, on the other hand, shouldn’t be the main driver behind your home purchase.
Quality of nearby schools
If starting or growing a family is in your near-term plans, then you’ll want to pay attention to the local school district where you’re purchasing. Even if you currently don’t have kids, it’s a good idea to investigate the schools and see how they compare to schools in neighboring towns.
Taxes and cost of living
Your location can also make a big impact on what you’ll pay in taxes and other living expenses. Investigate what you’ll likely pay in: sales taxes at local stores, property taxes, homeowners insurance, automobile insurance, and utility bills. All these added costs will increase your monthly housing bill and your overall cost of living. So take some time to compare expenses if you’re considering homes in multiple locations.
Every neighborhood has its unique qualities that you want to be aware of before you buy. When you work with a skilled real estate agency like Aspire Los Angeles, you’ll be well-informed about the different areas in Los Angeles. We look forward to assisting you on your home buyer’s journey.
When you’re a first time home buyer and you imagine your dream home, you probably picture a detached, single family house. A property that has only one residential unit. But that’s far from the only option available to first-time home buyers in today’s housing market. Another option is a multi-family home, which is increasingly popular nowadays.
What is a multi-family property?
A multi-family property is any property that has more than one unit. The smallest multi-family property has more than one unit and are called duplexes. The next step up are triplexes and fourplexes, having three and four units each, respectively. These multi-family units enable you to live in one unit and rent out the other(s) to offset your mortgage costs.
If you are a first time home buyer and weighing the options of a single family home versus multi family homes. Here are 4 reasons why you should consider a multi-family home as your first real estate purchase.
Lower Down Payment
One of the great benefits of buying a two to four unit multi-family home is that you can get a conventional primary residence mortgage with as little as 5% down. You could also qualify for Federal Housing Administration (FHA) and purchase a property with 3.5% down. If you’re a veteran or active-duty military, you may be able to get a home with 0%-down with a Veterans Affair loan.
Primary Residence Financing
It’s usually much cheaper to finance a primary home. If you’d like to take advantage of primary residence financing. You’ll get a lower interest rate and lower fees than you’d get for an investment property loan. If you’d like to qualify for primary residence financing, The United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), the parent of FHA, requires buyers of multi-family homes to occupy one of the units as your primary residence.
Lower Housing Payments
Another benefit of a multi-family home and therefore collecting rental income, is that it makes your housing payment lower or even erases it altogether. For example, if you buy a fourplex with a mortgage payment of $3000 per month and you collect $2500 in monthly rent from the other two units, your out-of-pocket housing payment drops to $500. Alternatively, you can use the rent money you collect to pay down your mortgage even faster.
Build equity faster
Buying a multifamily home instead of a single-family residence also lets you build equity faster — and by using your monthly rental income. For example, if you can spend $400,000 buying a triplex or $200,000 buying a single-family home, making your monthly mortgage payments on the triplex will build equity twice as fast.
Thus, there are many advantages to owning multi-family real estate. These include access to better financing opportunities, lower housing payments (due to rental income), and the ability to quickly grow one’s investment portfolio.
We at Aspire Los Angeles, would love to assist you in finding a sustainable multi-family unit which you can add to your investment dossier.
Buying or selling a home is one of the biggest investments of your life. When you are ready to enter the market, finding a real estate agent with the experience to guide you through the process is key.
Due to the abundance of real estate agents, finding the right candidate can feel overwhelming. With a long term asset like a home, you want to make sure you hire the perfect professional. But, how do you find the right real estate agent who fully understands your needs?
Here are some of the attributes our past clients appreciated from our agents. Perhaps these insights will help you to decide if Aspire Los Angeles is the suitable firm for you.
There’s no bigger compliment for us than a referral from our past clients. Through the years we’ve built and maintained a loyal client base. The testimonials from our clients can assist you in making a decision on whether Aspire Los Angeles is a good fit for you. Take a look at our testimonials to see if we are a match.
Track Record And Inventory
Our agents have over 16 years of experience and training in the real estate business. With our significant track record of serving clients, Aspire Los Angeles has built up a quality inventory. Our agents are specialized in the areas: Jefferson Park, West Adams, Baldwin Hills, Leimert Park, Downtown LA, but also West LA, and the outskirts of Pasadena. We’ve helped our customers find or sell craftsman homes, luxurious condos, contemporary mansions, mid century gems, and mediterranean villas.
According to our clients we provide the personal approach of a boutique firm, backed up with the bandwidth and strength of a real estate mogul.
Passion, Conviction And Honesty
We at Aspire have the passion, conviction, and honesty to assist you with your real estate matters. Our agents will do whatever it takes to get your home to sell faster and for the best price. Our team will go the extra mile to find you the house, you can call your home. We are passionate about our service and celebrate diversity and inclusivity among our team, our clients, and our local community.
When you sign up with one of our agents, you have immediate access to all the resources of our team members. Thus, you will always have direct access to your assigned agent and our efficient team will serve your needs as well. Though the logistics of buying and selling a home can be complicated, our support staff will go out of their way to make it a smooth ride.
If you are interested in buying property or selling your home. We, at Aspire Los Angeles, would like to assist you in this matter. Please don’t hesitate to contact us. We look forward to connecting you with the right agent on our team.
You are ready to sell your home as soon as possible and you realize you’ve lived with your home quirks for years. That jiggly bedroom door handle, the electrical outlet in the kitchen that hasn’t worked in a decade. The red carpet in the guest room that’s more dated than dramatic.
Selling your home is quite a task, and you have to deal with the imperfections of your home. But what are mandatory updates? How do you get your house ready to sell? Which repairs should you make to add more value, and to get your house to sell faster? We recommend getting a full home inspection, which will give you all the insights you need into your home’s condition.
The home inspection report will shed light on what improvements you might wish to make prior to the sale. We can help you prioritize these improvements to help you set the right price for your home. Let’s take a look at some recommended updates before selling a house.
Dated electrical issues need to be fixed immediately. You can’t have missing wire nuts, frayed wiring, or faulty light switches when selling your house.
Plumbing problems can cause water damage and lead to mold and dry rot. It’s not an option to leave plumbing problems unfixed. Even simple replacements of a leaky faucet, or a washer or toilet wax ring should be on your to-do list.
Heating, ventilation, and AC issues
Fortunately if your system isn’t running properly, it doesn’t mean you have to invest in an entire new system. Hiring a certified technician to repair it, can do the job. Do keep in mind that any system at the end of its lifespan can bring down the appraised value of your house. Especially if other houses in the neighborhood have newer units.
Aging roof tops decrease your property value and cause all sorts of water damage and ventilation problems, which leads to paint blistering and mold. Not to forget high energy bills. It’s worth the investment to install a new roof before you sell your home. Though the average cost to replace a roof is $12,000 you will recoup that cost at resale.
A severely damaged foundation threatens the integrity of your home. Selling a home becomes difficult, when the foundation is flawed. Unless you are willing to negotiate on a lower asking price, you will benefit from restoring the foundation of the house you are selling.
Lack of modern safety features
Every state requires in-home smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors. Make sure you know your state and local laws. Inspectors or appraisers will look for smoke and carbon monoxide detectors.
Aesthetic pleasing updates
You can benefit from aesthetic pleasing updates when selling your home. They aren’t mandatory by state and local law like an in-home smoke detector, but aesthetic pleasing updates can help to sell your house faster.
A new coat of paint will do wonders to freshen up your home, both inside and out. Leaving busy wallpaper, your daughter’s purple bedroom, the quirky turquoise bathroom, can turn off potential buyers. If you can, repaint your house in neutral colors.
If your kitchen, bathroom, or living room look dated, you may benefit from some minor work prior to putting your house on the market. Cabinet or door hardware, new countertops can have a big impact on your final sales price.
Luckily you don’t have to do this alone. Start by asking a top local real estate agent for help. We at Aspire Los Angeles are excited to help you decide on the necessary updates and to present your valuable home on the market.
When looking for fixer uppers, you want to focus your search on those up and coming neighborhoods that are filled to the brim with potential while still having affordable options to choose from. We know thats not an easy thing to do in Los Angeles. Let’s take a look at some strategies you can apply to your search.
When looking for a fixer upper in Los Angeles, it is always a good idea to start off in the older neighborhoods. The homes were built in the early 1900s and were built solid and dependable, so you have good bones to work with.
With developments such as the Crenshaw line and Whole Foods coming to the neighborhood, South LA is hot right now. As we live in work in this neighborhood we know everything there is to know about where to find a great, affordable fixer upper and we are happy to share with you how to create a beautiful modern vignette in these historic homes without losing the bones and charm of the property.
We are talking east of the LA river here, neighborhood such as Highland Park, Elysian Valley and even Echo Park still possess many diamonds in the rough.Highland Park is considered a historic neighborhood and was one of the first subdivisions of Los Angeles, and is inhabited by a variety of ethnic and socioeconomic groups. El Sereno
With the The Crenshaw/LAX Line from north-south serving this Mid City, this is a good neighborhood to put on your list when you are looking for a fixer. The area is highly diverse in both people as well as amenities, including the nearby world class museum LACMA.
Another location to check out is Sherman Oaks. It is located near the 101 and 405 freeways which give you quick access to Hollywood and downtown Los Angeles. This area is a quiet community with tree-lined sidewalks and its fair share of mom and pop shops further adding to its charm. This area has several fixer uppers still available, but with the rising popularity and demand for this appealing neighborhood, people are reluctant to sell their homes.
This is the neighborhood that is home to the infamous 2,700-foot mural called, “The Great Wall of Los Angeles.” Homes here are still affordable despite the many more upscale communities beginning to surround the area.Right now, there are still plenty of fixers to choose from. We consider this an up and coming neighborhood in LA. Everything is being renovated, updated, and sold off quickly.
In short, if you are on the hunt for a historic single-family home or something much trendier, you definitely want to check out these LA areas as soon as possible.
During shifts in the real estate market place, like the one we are experiencing right now, we receive more questions about real estate investing. Home prices are growing at a much slower pace and this can have a positive impact on income property prices for first time investors. The rental market is not indicated to slow down, we foresee it will keep on climbing, creating a great environment for investors.
Investing in real estate to create wealth is sound strategy, but what many don’t realize is that there are some very real dos and don’ts when it comes to making your (first) investment.
Real estate investing is not just exciting and potentially profitable – it’s also intimidating and carries with it some very real risks. As such, it’s important to pay attention to some of the main things that can help you get the absolute best results possible from your efforts.
These dos and don’ts can make a huge difference in your results, and can ensure that you find true success when investing in real estate. Here are the main points to keep in mind.
- Don’t Act Based on Emotions – It’s far too common for people to let their heart guide them when making an investment decision. But your mind is what you should be listening to. Logic and hard numbers should be a key factor in your investment – don’t act on emotions.
- Don’t Assume You Know It All – Investors making their first purchase often get cocky and assume that they have all the answers. It’s important not to assume that you know it all or that you can learn everything in a couple of days. Instead, be patient and take your time learning everything that you can. You’ll gain skills that will help you throughout your investments throughout the future – but only if you listen and learn.
- Do Your Research – Take the time to calculate expenses, potential profits, overall costs, and more. There’s no need to make a purchase without doing some due diligence, and making the right investment decision begins by knowing all you can about a property’s potential and your investment results.
- Don’t Ignore Debts – Be sure to pay attention to the debts that you carry into your investment. Everything from student loans to medical bills can have an impact on the rates you get and the terms of a loan, and the better your portfolio and your history, the better your results.
- Give Tenants Your Attention – It’s easy to ignore tenants once you have a property and a signed lease. But word of mouth makes a huge difference in your investment future, and giving tenants the attention they deserve is important.
The bottom line here is simple – don’t make rash decisions and be sure to consider all of your options carefully to make sure you get the results you need and get the best outcome from every investment.
It’s taken years, but you’ve put in tremendous work and finally reached a point where you’re ready to start your investment portfolio the right way. Starting an investment portfolio is something that you’ll want to consider carefully, but just remember that for many, real estate remains the go-to foundation for creating a solid portfolio that they can trust to last a lifetime.
Starting A Real Estate Investment Portfolio
Marshall Field, an entrepreneur from the 1800s, once said “Buying real estate is not only the best way, the quickest way, the safest way, but the only way to become wealthy.” Outside of winning the lottery or landing a huge inheritance, he’s not too far off the mark even today. Real estate investors are well-known as being among the wealthiest in the country, and while your investment portfolio can rely on stocks, hedge funds, and more, it is well worth taking the time to build your real estate legacy as well.
Why Is Real Estate So Important? So just why should you consider owning real estate as an investment? There are several key reasons that stand out. Some of the main ones include:
- Leverage – Real estate is among only a handful of assets that allow you to use huge amounts of leverage to own the asset. Lenders will generally give you the money you need if you meet basic qualifications, and even a small 2% rise in your home’s value could give you double-digit returns on the investment.
- Supply and Demand – Mark Twain once said “Buy land. They’re not making it anymore.” That shows just why it’s worth investing in real estate. There is only so much of it to go around, and yet there is a constant demand for it. Simply put, it’s one of the most reliable options when building a portfolio.
- Inflation-Proof – Inflation can impact virtually everything out there in terms of cost, and makes it harder to get the most from your money at times. But real estate is one of the few things that is essentially inflation proof and that you can buy with confidence.
The key to succeeding when you’re creating a real estate legacy and starting your investment portfolio is to work with real estate pros who understand your goals. Take the time to talk to them about what you’re looking for, and they can help guide you towards investments that you can buy with confidence.