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Mid-Tenn Homes

--July 11-24, 2018

3A

Beginner’s guide to real estate investments

P

urchasing a house

or property is about

more than setting up a

home. Although quite

a number of people buy real

estate to establish their future,

long-term abodes, many oth-

ers recognize the potentially

lucrative investment that lies

within a real estate purchase.

Despite the ups and downs

of the economy, real estate has

become a common investment

vehicle - one that has plenty of

potential for making big gains

for those who are willing to put

in the effort. According to the

experts at Entrepreneur, even

in a bad economy, real estate

investments will usually fare

better than stocks. Real estate

also continues to appreciate

despite the occasional eco-

nomical slow-down.

Like any other endeavor,

there is a right and a wrong

way to go about investing in

real estate. Novices may not

know where to begin their first

forays into the real estate mar-

ket as investors, even if they

already own their own homes.

Buying a property as an invest-

ment is an entirely different

animal than buying a home to

establish a residence. How-

ever, with the right guidance,

anyone can dabble in real es-

tate.

· Establish financial goals.

Before you even begin looking

at properties or put forth

the effort of meeting with an

agent, you must determine

what you expect from the

investment. The days of buying

real estate and flipping it for

a fast profit may no longer

be here. However, real estate

can provide a steady stream of

long-term income. Understand

what you hope to achieve by

investing. If it’s to become

an overnight millionaire, you

may be looking at the wrong

investment vehicle in real

estate.

· Establish a plan. New

investors who do not have a

plan in place will likely spend

toomuchor havemore setbacks

than others who have planned

accordingly. When investing

in real estate, it’s more about

the bottom line than the

property itself. According to

Springboard Academy, a real

estate academy for investors,

look for motivated sellers and

stick to a set purchase price.

Try to make offers on a variety

of properties that work in your

financial favor. And know

what you want to do with the

property (i.e., renovate and

sell, remove and rebuild, or

rehab and rent) before you

buy. Fit the house to the plan,

and not vice-versa.

· Start small. If this is your

first time out there, stick with

properties that will turnover

quickly. Research areas in

and around urban centers

or close to transportation

and shopping. A good starter

property is a small house or

a condominium that can be

refurbished and then rented.

Rental

properties

offer

steady sources of income

when renters are properly

vetted, offers Investopedia, an

investment resource.

· Look at many different

properties. Become an expert

by learning as much as you can

about what is out there. Attend

open houses; look for vacant/

unattractive properties; scour

the classifieds in your local

paper; or put the word out

there that you’re interested

in buying a property. Only

look at properties that have

motivated sellers, because

then you’ll get closest to the

price you want to pay. And

don’t forget to research the

area and the home turnover

rate for the specific area where

you are looking. Don’t make

assumptions that a property

will appreciate without doing

your homework.

Real estate can be a worthy

investment opportunity. With

research, a plan and the right

price, just about anyone can

be a real estate investor.

Create a sale-worthy showplace

T

he sentiment

“don’t

judge

a book by its

cover” can be

applied to many situ-

ations. When it comes

to selling their homes,

homeowners

should

remember this adage

as they prepare their

homes for prospective

buyers.

Statista

indicates

that there were 560,000

houses sold in the Unit-

ed States in 2016. The

Canadian Real Estate

Association said a re-

cord 536,118 residen-

tial properties changed

hands in 2016, marking

a 6.3 percent increase

from 2015.

Homeowners

who

want to make their

properties stand out can

take the following steps.

De-personalize

the home.

Homeowners

fill

their spaces with family

photos, heirlooms, per-

sonal interests, and oth-

er conversation pieces.

Prospective buyers may

not be able to see past

personal

belongings

and may even be dis-

tracted by them. For ex-

ample, buyers who have

strong beliefs about ani-

mal welfare may not buy

a home displaying hunt-

ing trophies. Remove

personalized

items

where possible, replac-

ing them with generic

items.

Improve

the exterior.

HGTV says that curb

appeal is crucial to mak-

ing a strong first impres-

sion. A messy or lacklus-

ter landscape can turn

buyers away even be-

fore they reach the front

door. Mow the lawn

and make sure shrub-

bery has been trimmed.

Seasonal potted flow-

ers and plants can help

make the house look

polished. Repair cracks

or damaged walkways,

and consider a fresh

coat of paint on trim

around windows and

doors.

Pressure-wash

siding if necessary.

Put things

in storage.

Rent a storage unit

to house items that can

make a home appear

cluttered. Clean out

closets and cabinets,

so that when buyers

“snoop” during appoint-

ments or open houses

they see orderly stor-

age areas. If closets are

brimming with stuff,

buyers may assume

the house doesn’t have

enough storage space

and move on.

Make it light

and bright.

Open up all of the

drapes and blinds, and

turn on overhead lights

so the house is well-lit.

Add table lamps or oth-

er fixtures to especially

dim rooms.

Create a hotel

experience.

Forbes suggests mak-

ing bathrooms look like

a spa. Stack a few pretty

washcloths tied with rib-

bon, add some scented

candles and faux plants

and buy bathmats and

towels in coordinating

tones.

Remove

extrane-

ous items from kitchen

counters and replace

them with vases of flow-

ers. In addition, set up

dining spaces as if one

were sitting down to a

meal, and ensure ap-

pliances are sparkling

clean.

Use common

‘scents’.

Skip the fish, bacon

or other aromatic meals

for a few days, as such

foods can leave lin-

gering aromas. Baked

goods, vanilla and cin-

namon might make for

more appealing scents.

Making a home sell

fast involves prepara-

tion and the knowledge

that buyers are often

greatly influenced by

their first impressions.

Top 3 reasons buying an eco-friendly home is best

I

f you’re in the market for a

newly built home, a home

that is environmentally

friendly should be your top

priority. More than just great for

the environment, a green home

saves you time and money and

increases the value of your prop-

erty. Read on for why an eco-

friendly dwelling is the way to go

for the place your family will call

home for years to come.

1. Save on your energy bills. “A

huge step forward is to replace

the traditional wood framing

of your house with what we call

ICFs - insulated concrete forms,”

says Keven Rector at Nudura, a

leading name in this technology.

“If, for instance, you build the

envelope of your house with con-

crete instead of wood, the energy

required to heat and cool it will

be signicantly reduced, a plus

for the environment, and along

with reduced energy bills, a plus

for you.”

2. First-rate safety and pro-

tection. With insulated concrete

wall systems, you can be sure

that your home will endure some

of Mother Nature’s worst. Homes

with this system are disaster-

resilient and boast re-, sound-

and tornado-resistant proper-

ties. “Our advanced design com-

bines two panels of thick (EPS)

foamwith the structural strength

and thermal mass of concrete,”

Rector explains. “The resulting

envelope immediately gives your

house hurricane wind-resistance

up to 250 miles per hour.”

3. Long-term value. Remem-

ber that high quality materials

will withstand the test of time.

For example, using reinforced

concrete for the main structural

element is more durable and re-

quires less maintenance and re-

pair over its lifetime compared

to wood structures that require

regular maintenance over their

limited life span. A home built

with this concrete system is also

far less prone to mold, cold spots

and drafts - making the upkeep

easier and increasing its attrac-

tiveness to buyers if you ever de-

cide to sell.

If you want your builder to use

ICFs, be sure to discuss it early

in the plans. Find more informa-

tion online at nudura.com.