I just spent the past 4 days with an out of state buyer. We looked at a bunch of houses. I always get a little nervous when I know somebody from out of town has to buy something within a short time period. It is because I know that I am their sole resource in making a big decision. That is a big responsibility. I guess I have my Dad to thank for this. He is a lawyer. I have watched him most of my life as he really represents his clients best interests. I think if he wasn’t such a good guy and wasn’t a lawyer, it would be easy for me to consider my job more about selling houses than representing people.
This client was a single lady. What I had in mind was something that wouldn’t be likely to have a major problem for a long time and to be in an area that she would be safe. I checked all the property disclosures before we went out to see any of the houses. I was pretty pleased with how many seemed to have both a newer roof and newer HVAC. Those are usually the top 2 ways to not have a lot of fun spending money on a house.
The problem I was having was finding one in an area that I thought she would feel safe. There are lots of good streets in that price range, but a lot of them have you driving through questionable area. I wanted her to be somewhere that if she got a flat tire on the way home she would be fine walking home, or waiting in her car.
When she found the one she wanted to make an offer on, I kind of did my own version of a home inspection. My dad would be glad to know that SOMEBODY benefits from all the college courses in Architectural Technologies that he paid for, as well as all the time he spent showing me how to work on houses! Everything checked out pretty good.
Before we wrote the offer, I went to work on all the research. I checked the website to see if any registered sex offenders lived nearby. I hit the PVA to see who owned the properties around her, and how long they had been there. I was looking for signs that there was a lot of rental. My problem with rental property is not the tenant, it is the landlords who cashflow their properties to death and drive down the values for owner-occupants. Often, investors title their property as LLC’s. Another clue is to see where the tax bill is sent. If it isn’t sent to the house, that means more than likely that the owner is renting it. I also hit the crime map to see what types of calls the police get.
While I get nervous having that much of a say in other people’s decisions, I gotta say that it is always fun to do that much work for other people…………but today, I am going to chill out for a bit!