Buying a home is probably the biggest investment you’ll ever make, so we know you want to feel good about signing on the dotted line and hopefully closing on your dream home. To do that though, you’ll want to put your mind at ease with some cold hard facts— sometimes just because a home looks like it is exactly what you’ve been dreaming of doesn’t mean it is. So to avoid any hidden nightmares, here are 4 ways you can do your research:
Check Building Records:
Today, you can find nearly all public information online, which means you should be able to access your potential home’s building permit history. By law, sellers are required to disclose this information to interested parties, but they don’t always have a full picture of what their home’s permit history has been either.
So is that restored bathroom or kitchen selling you hard? Make sure that the work was permitted! If it wasn’t you’ll become responsible for any un-permitted work when you take ownership of the home.
Use Google Street View:
Gain insight into a property’s history by using the Google Street View tool— It captures a specific moment in time so not only will you be able to see how your potential neighborhood and home have evolved (or not), but you’ll get a glimpse into what an “everyday” looks like living there instead of the more manicured look you’ll get at a showing.
Look at a Neighborhood Crime App:
There are numerous apps out there today that make researching neighborhood crime easy. Our favorite is Crime Reports. You’ll get a bird’s eye view of what the climate of your neighborhood is and know what to expect at the very least, before you’re moved in.
Work with a Realtor you TRUST:
We hope it goes without saying, but you should always work with a real estate agent you trust. When your real estate agent is looking out for your best interest, you can lean on them in the research phase of your home buying journey. In fact, they might even do some of the heavy lifting for you! At HARRELL we hope you can trust that we are a company full of your fellow teammates— Continuously fighting for your best interest!