Home-buying 101: Top Tips for First-Timers

Home-buying 101: Top Tips for First-Timers

Buying a home is an exciting experience, especially when you find the perfect one for your family. For a newcomer in the property market, you can be successful simply by knowing the scene before diving into it. Use these helpful tips from experienced buyers so you can go from visiting an open house to acquiring a property title, problem-free.

Your success in landing a good property depends on you knowing as much about the market as possible. So exactly what do you have to know before buying a property? Here are some pointers:

Learn where best to buy

You may know where you want to live, but is it the best place for you?

Everyone wants to live in the country’s top bustling cities: Makati, Ortigas, Quezon City, and Alabang to name a few. These areas have excellent amenities, from malls to parks, schools and hospitals, so it’s clear why these areas are attractive. Great concentrations of property developments can also be found in the country’s big cities so there is plenty of choice.

The smaller cities still have much to offer however. Outside the major metros you will find fresher air, greener sceneries, more space and more privacy. Comparable roperties are also more affordable than in the big cities.

There are significant points of difference between the big and the small cities. The decision, however, may ultimately be determined by your budget.

Study the economics of real estate

Before you can buy a home, you have to identify whether or not you’re financially ready. The next step is to understand your true budget for purchasing a home.

It’s not just about how much you’ll spend, it’s also how you’ll spend that you have to think about. See, buying a home is far different from buying groceries. It’s a process that involves taxes, mortgages, loans, and down payments--financial terms you need to understand. You also need to know about your home’s market value so you can be sure to get your money’s worth, as well as its appreciation value, which defines how much the value of your home rises over time. These values should be favorable so you make the most of your investment.

Also to avoid problems, remember that the paying doesn’t stop with the down payment. Most bank loans shoulder 90% of the purchase price. Even so, you still have to pay the bank for the loan and the government for your taxes. Be sure to really understand your re-payment capabilities now so you don’t find yourself at risk of losing your home to foreclosure or to an auction.

Your local bank or your lawyer will have more information on these subjects. Be sure to compare bank offers before making a decision and don’t hesitate to ask them all of your questions to avoid legal and financial headaches.

Know the country’s developers

With the boom of the Filipino property market, more projects are lining the streets and more developers are joining the competition. In this expanding market it’s important for you to understand which developer will provide the best property for your needs.

It’s not easy to know who is who however. Competition is growing, and more developers are now creating projects for mixed use, which means you can live, work, play, and shop in your own community. They’re also developing more quality gated communities, condos, malls, and office buildings in flood-free areas.

To assist you with your choice, you should check the news for both positive and negative reports about developers. You can also find out which developers offer payment options that will help your particular situation. Take a look at their properties, too. You may just fall in love at first sight.

Whether you want to live in luxury or in simplicity, or whether you’re prioritizing quality, location, or price, the country’s developers have something for you.

Mind your papers

Your payment receipts aren’t the only papers you receive when you buy a home. There are others you will encounter that are even more important which must be kept safe.

Transfer Certificate of Title, Certified True Copy, Tax Declaration, Tax Receipt, and Property Title--you may have heard of these papers but don’t know so much about them. The main thing to know is that you need them, and that they have to be authentic.

These papers prove your ownership of the property, so you have to take extra care to check their authenticity. To see if the Transfer Certificate of Title is original, get the Certified True Copy from the Register of Deeds and match them up. For the Title, you have to confirm that the property is not mortgaged by checking that the “Encumbrances” section is empty except for the continuation of the previous page. Finally, you need the Tax Declaration and the Tax Receipt to make sure that the taxes of the property have been duly paid. Whether you’re buying a new home or one previously owned, these are mandatory documents for you to obtain and look after.

Ask your lawyer to check the documents with you. You cannot go wrong by asking for help.

Listen & Ask

You’re a property newbie, so you shouldn’t fear asking for help every step of the way. With the right professional by your side--be it an agent, a broker, a lawyer, or even the bank--you will be hosting a housewarming in no time. Remember to ask all your questions and listen to the answers, so the next time you buy a home will be easier. The pros are here to help, so don’t hesitate to ask.

There is a lot to learn, so it’s a good idea to start reading as much as possible. Success is all in the knowing. Now you’re ready to scout for a home and sign some papers!

source : realestate.ph
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