Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Three Ways To Make Money With Your Condo

First published on CondoAsia.ph

Buying a condo that’s right for you is a good investment. But it’s somewhat disheartening to recount how much you initially spent on it and how much you’ll need to spend further on a monthly basis. Although your property’s value will eventually go up, you can’t just sit back and wait for that to happen. If these things do bother you, making money with your property can be a great idea.

Here are three ways to make money with your property, particularly your condo:

  • Rent It Out 

This is the most obvious way to make money with your property. But renting out your condo can be very risky because it might lead to incurring damages or encouraging theft. As a landlord, you should be extremely picky when it comes to tenants; you should also insure your property.

If you’re renting out your condo, do it on a monthly basis or a 12-month lease. If you’re going to rent it out for business, i.e. set it up as an office space, you can still have a place to go home to at night. That way, you can avoid incurring damages to your property because your tenants won’t likely throw rowdy parties without you knowing.

  •  Use Those Extra Spaces 
You may have a garage, but you don’t own a car.

Rent it out to your neighbor who needs a garage or an extra space.

If you have an extra bedroom, find a housemate who can rent out the room. To avoid possible property damages and that feeling of strangeness and uneasiness toward each other, find someone you personally know and are comfortable with.

  •  Make It A Vacation Rental 
When you’re traveling for the holidays or gone for days for a summer camp, rent out your condo to tourists and guests.

However, before you convert your condo into a vacation rental, you have to determine first if it’s suitable to be used as a vacation rental. To start with, the location of your condo should be appealing enough to tourists and guests. Certain amenities such as high-speed Internet, a jacuzzi, and a swimming pool are expected.

Making extra money with your condo is a piece of cake if only you were resourceful and creative; you just have to spruce up your property and deal with the right people to earn that extra cash. However, make sure to check out your lease, condo and zoning bylaws so you’ll know if you’re violating any rules. Knowing where you stand and following the rules are always vital to responsible and successful investing.

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Thursday, January 22, 2015

Five Worst Mistakes First-Time Condo Buyers Make

First published on CondoAsia.ph 

Investing in a condo can be one of your major life achievements; but it can also be one of your biggest downfalls, especially if it’s your first time, and you commit the same mistakes that some people did before buying their first homes.

For your first purchase to be successful, be cautious of your decisions, and avoid these five mistakes:

1. Not Getting Mortgage Approval 

Before purchasing a home, you must first secure a home loan and get your mortgage approved. Sadly, some first-time buyers fail to qualify for a mortgage due to poor credit history. If you’re applying for a mortgage, don’t secure credit for a new car or a bedroom furniture simultaneously. New financial obligations can lower your credit score.

Never co-sign a loan while you’re trying to close a home loan. Don’t act as a guarantor for someone else’s debt. Accumulating more debts can only diminish your mortgage eligibility.

Also don’t accept a new job offer while you’re applying for a mortgage because you will need a steady source of income to prove your liquidity to your lender.

2. Lacking Vision 

Lacking vision simply means not seeing what is about to come. A first-time buyer usually gets too excited about getting a house, but tends to forget the little, yet important, details. Be forward-looking—anticipate problems before they happen.

Besides the mortgage fees, buyers should not also forget to factor in the extra costs when buying a condo, which include taxes, insurances, monthly utility bills, and maintenance expenses.

Know what you can really afford before buying a condo.

Don’t settle on compromises. Again, be forward-looking; don’t decide depending on your current situation. For example, don’t buy a single-bedroom home if you’re planning to have children sometime soon.

3. Paying Extra for Upgrades 

Don’t be fooled by sellers, brokers, and agents who are trying to outsmart you. You don’t need those upgrades (wallpapers, flooring materials) for now. Physical imperfections are quite easy to resolve without spending too much. Minor upgrades, cosmetic fixes are actually inexpensive.

4. Not Doing Condo Inspection 

You need to inspect your future condo inside and out. If there are any adjustments to be made, you may want to reconsider your decision. Don’t spend extra cash on repairs and replacements.

To avoid this mistake, don’t close a sale until you have a concrete, full idea of your prospective property’s soundness and physical condition.

5. Not Hiring An Agent/Not Using Seller’s Agent 

You should hire a real estate agent to guide you throughout the home buying process. Agents, who follow ethical guidelines, should protect both the seller and buyer’s interests. To make sure that will happen, hire an agent for yourself first before dealing with the property seller’s own agent.

Your agent should lead you to various properties that fit your requirements and budget. The seller’s agent, on the other hand, may unearth important information that can guide you to making a wise decision.

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