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Targeting Peak Market Properties in Real Estate

Targeting Peak Market Properties in Real Estate

Attention! Must read for anyone buying or selling a home in a peak real estate market! http://thehomefax.blogspot.com/2016/05/targeting-properties-in-peak-real.html

The Home Fax™ Real Estate Blog Recap

1. Big Impact Spring Home Maintenance Tips

Learn how to spot and fix potential grading issues around the landscape of your home and see the impact, importance and simplicity of exceptional downspout drainage systems.

2. National & Local Real Estate Market Cycle Factors

Did you know national real estate factors, such as interest rates, and local factors, such as supply and demand, are of top-notch importance to understand when buying or selling a home?

3. Real Estate Strategies by Market Cycle

Learning to apply the correct strategy, or strategies, during any real estate market cycle can help amateurs and rookies make elite decisions that help you profit, even when others may be experiencing a loss. It's all about the strategy!

4. Identifying Target Real Estate Markets, Cycles & Locations

Can you identify the current state of the real estate market cycle and implement the correct strategy to maximize your investment?

Big Impact Spring Home Maintenance Tips

Big Impact Spring Home Maintenance Tips 

Springtime is typically known for heavy amounts of rain, variable temperatures and higher levels of ground water from thawed permafrost. Be sure to take advantage of these home maintenance tips that are simple, affordable and do not consume a lot of time. The result of your efforts could mean big savings down the road!

Grading around the foundation

The foundation of your home is vitally important to the long-term condition of your property. One of the easiest tasks that is best fit for spring is adding soil around the low-spots near and around the foundation of your home. Start with the areas closest to your foundation and work your way across the landscape, redirecting water away from your home instead of into your foundation. Larger amounts of soil should be added closest to your home to create a grade that directs water away from the penetration points of your foundation and into your yard. 

Reason being, as spring is prone to heavy rain, water always wants to find its way back to the ground. As permafrost thaws and groundwater breaks, it's very easy for the soil and sediment around your home to erode away. As it erodes, the rain and groundwater begins to pond. Ponding results in heavy amounts of water seeping into the lowest areas around the home, including small cracks and penetrations near the structure. 

Temperatures tend to fluctuate, sometimes quite heavily during springtime. Mornings may be cool and wet, while the afternoon sun warms the ground and helps excess ground water thaw and rise to the surface. As it rises, and night falls, cool temperatures are prone to be below freezing. As the water works its way within the cracks and penetration points around your foundation, that freezing water expands, creating larger gaps and penetration points for a multitude of short and long-term potential problems. 

Here is an example of the cause-and-effect grading can have not only on your foundation, but on the interior portion of your exterior walls. The second photo is taken from the inside of the area where the lowest portion of brick begins to appear. This is the effect moisture has trying to make its way into the structure.

Downspout Extensions

For the same reasons as adding soil around your foundation, properly functioning downspout extensions are extremely important during the springtime. Begin by checking each downspout extension around your home, as well as your gutters, for any cracks, leaks, unsecured anchors, broken pieces, missing extensions, or inadequate lengths to direct water away from your home. This task will save you big time.  

A proper downspout extension system will allow the rainwater to safely and freely travel from the highest point of your roof to the refilled areas around the home that have been regraded, correctly moving that water away from your home and into your lawn (creating a richer soil for your grass to sprout and grow healthy). 

Direct the end of your extensions at least 5 feet away from your home, use sealant to fix any potential leaks or penetration areas, and replace any missing elbows or connection pieces sooner than later.Replace splash plates with larger extensions and check your progress during the next rainfall. You'll be surprised how well you can see your downspout systems functioning when it's raining, compared to dry. 

Until next time, visit www.NationwideHomeFax.com for all of your national real estate information needs and www.HomeFaxInspect.com for all of your home inspection requests and never forget to Know the Home Before You Buy...

National & Local Real Estate Market Cycle Factors

Have you ever wondered how or why the real estate market follows cycles?

As with most concepts, ideas and opinions vary, and very few scenarios should include a blanket statement answer. Fact of the matter is that many aspects contribute to each area, with such complexity that truly determining the entire list of factors that affect any market cycle change, or series of changes, is not realistic or probable.

With that being said, there are certain high level aspects nationally and locally that contribute, affect, and determine the transition and current state of any real estate market. If you’re a real estate professional, investor, or financial company, you’re probably already aware of national and local factors that contribute to the market cycle changes within the real estate industry.

Why though are national and local factors important, even for consumers (buyers and renters) and non-industry related professionals?

If you can recognize, even as a one-time home buyer, the current national and local factors that contribute to a real estate market cycle, then you can feasibly understand, with educated reasoning, how those factors help you make a smart financial investment that ultimately allows you to Know the Home Before You Buy™.

As discussed by Dean Graziosi, one of the most highly acclaimed real estate investors in the country, various components exist within both national and local real estate market cycle factors:

National Factors:

  • Interest Rates: (High Importance)
  • Business Cycles
  • Inflation
  • Flow of Investment Funds
  • Cataclysmic Events: (Usually Unpredictable)

Local Factors:

  • Supply & Demand: (High Importance)
  • Neighborhood Trends
  • Migration & Job Growth
  • Development Plans
  • New Construction

Next week, we’ll dig a little deeper into each national factor component, exploring more information and aspects that relate and contribute to the current, past, and future predictability of national and local real estate cycles.

Until then, Know the Home Before You Buy by visiting www.NationwideHomeFax.com for all of your national real estate information needs & be sure to schedule your next seller’s inspection, pre-listing inspection, or home inspection with Home Fax Inspections.

 

Nationwide Home Fax LLC, its affiliates, The Home Fax™ Blog, and the author of this posting are not affiliated with Dean Graziosi, or any of his relatable entity(s) or party(s), and have referenced information used through this posting strictly as a secondary source from Mr. Graziosi’s book How to be a Real Estate Millionaire, without obligation or compensation.

Real Estate Strategies by Market Cycle

Last week we discussed Identifying Target Real Estate Markets, Cycles & Locations and found seven common points within the real estate market cycle. Now that we’ve reviewed the typical strategies applied to each point of the market cycle, let’s explore the identification process and expand upon those strategies to help you identify the current state or your local real estate market.

1) Peak: Sell

Like most experiences in life, there is a time to sow and a time to harvest. In a peak real estate market supply (inventory) is low, and demand (buyers seeking to purchase) is high.

Remember when Beanie Babies and 1980’s sports cards were the hottest toys and collectibles around, with dealers fetching prime dollar for even some of the most common items around? People followed the crowd, some to the point of hoarding their future retirement “investments”, only to find that some years later most of what they had held was pretty much worthless because it was overvalued. Like the dealers who saw prime opportunity to off their inventory for massive prices and profits while everyone was buying, as opposed to holding, smart real estate investors sell, sell, and sell in a peak market. They’re honestly is only one strategy, SELL, and do not buy.  

2) Early Downturn: Sell or Hold

Almost every aspect of the real estate market begins to see the effects of reaching maximum capacity. Cap rates begin to trend upward and purchase prices are starting to fall. The influx of demand slowly starts to dissipate and the market sees a bit more inventory, with homes starting to extend their recent listing period on the market. Any fix-n-flips should be turned over expediently, and hopefully those income properties invested in earlier have already been sold during the peak market or beginning of the early downturn.

Renovations should be held to a minimum, but new home construction, such as the last models within newly developed areas, might be found for a steep discount. Reason being, those companies have made their profits during the peak market and you may get a steal for being late to the party, similar to buying a display Christmas tree for 10% cost of the original purchase price. Sure, it might be January, but there’s a time to sow and a time to harvest, remember?

3) Full Downturn: Hold or Acquire

As the bottom has dropped out of demand, landlords are doing all they can to extend leases and hold current tenants, while foreclosures are increasing and sales volume has decreased drastically. Inventory begins to rise, and prices that do sell are falling steeply. Banks risk less on credit, with higher interest rates, leaving property purchased with cash as the best option. Any development homes still left are on full clearance, investments are being dumped, and renovations a time of the past. If you missed the early downturn and choose to sell now, you may lose deeply. Holding may very well be the best option, and may take a longer period of time to see recovery. Any relocations or necessary moves, for instance, may need to involve a long-term lease at the most affordable property management costs.

4) Bottom: Acquire

Homeowners who purchased their home during a peak market may have their stomachs turned upside down at this point. During this stage, supply is up and demand is down, driving down purchase prices for investors to acquire and hold, or acquire and lease. Typically strategies involve buying income properties for cheap.

You will tend to see an influx of foreclosures (some due to people who don’t want to pay a mortgage for a property that is worth 25-30% less than what they owe –don’t be ‘that guy’), which is a great example of a quality income property. Buying property at this stage, when most people are too scared, or have switched focus to the stock market or other investment areas, is a prime opportunity. As rental prices are lowest at this point, this is about the only time we would recommend exploring renting, as necessary. In addition, homeowners should be holding, and investors acquiring.

If you’re planning on purchasing a home in six months, you may want to consider purchasing now.

5) Early Recovery: Acquire, Develop and Explore Renting

Inventory is available below replacement cost and trading for above replacement cost. Meaning, if you put $5,000 in renovations within your property, you should see a $10,000 return on the purchase price or equivalent increase in monthly rent.

As the rental market may be gaining some steam, and prices leveling, wise real estate investors put as little, or much, as necessary into leased income property as possible. With vacancy rates decreasing, occupancy is still low, but demand is improving. Foreclosures may be lightening up, but affordable property in ideal locations should be acquired and developed, or held until the late stable market. One year leases may be the best option to prohibit a vacancy period, expiring within the late stable to peak point where selling may be explored.

6) Late Stable: Rent, Refinance, Improve, and Prepare for Selling

Credit is affordable, vacancy rates are decreasing, rentals are increasing, and purchase prices are gaining steam. It’s time for the fix-n-flip, leases, and renovations.  

7) Peak: Sell

Repeat step 1 and watch closely to determine the next early downturn. In our opinion, (which is the minority opinion, to be fair) this is where we believe most real estate markets across the nation currently sit as of February 2016. Most people would tell you we’re in Step 6, late stable, preparing to Peak with a good year or so left in high-priced inventory. So with that being said, even professionals will not always agree, and only time will tell.

What stage do you think your local real estate market is currently in? Any different nationally?

Next week we will explore different local, state, regional and national factors that contribute to real estate market cycles and strategies. Until then, Nationwide Home Fax™ and Home Fax™ Inspections will help you Know the Home Before You Buy™.

Identifying Target Real Estate Markets, Cycles & Locations

Location, location, location…the real estate 101 catch phrase we’re all familiar with, if not engrossed in.

Why is location so important, though?

Practically every aspect of a home can be altered or changed with enough money, time and resources, except location. Even the most serious of home defects, such as foundations, structures, roofs or new electrical systems can be fortified, updated, replaced or repaired.

Then what determines a locations desirability?

If you’ve ever owned a home, you might understand how your neighbor’s home, the foreclosure down the street, city school systems, tax funding, and new development impact your home’s value. As many additional aspects also contribute to desirable locations and home values, these main components lead most people to avoid all properties in certain locations. Some people know so much about a location that they don’t even realize they missed a diamond in the rough because they failed to explore or reach outside of their single strategy.

Ready for one of the best kept secrets in the real estate market that the wisest investors don’t want you to know? You can make money in any location, through smart investments, by applying the correct strategy to the current market cycle.

What do you mean? What is a market cycle strategy?

Almost every aspect of investing (e.g. stocks, bonds, real estate, etc.) have market cycles. Within the real estate market specifically, there are common cycle points, often referred to through different names, including: Peak, Early Downturn, Full Downturn, Bottom, Early Recovery, Early Stable, and Late Stable. Check out the graph from Creonline.com below for a visual of what these mean.

When viewing a historical market cycle via line graphs, you’ll generally notice that the market resembles a roller-coaster. That’s because the cycle is progressively advancing through each stage of the market over time. This is caused by various means, but often results in those who own real estate applying the incorrect strategy, not understanding that it is commonplace for a market to bottom out and peak, for instance.

Often times missing the correct point to apply a certain strategy will lead to selling at the time you should be holding, renting to a tenant when you should be selling, and overpaying purchase costs due to a lack of inventory or decision to follow the crowd.

So which strategy should I apply during each cycle?

The answer to this question is complex, but on a basic level real estate owners who generate wealth typically apply these general strategies during each respective point in the market cycle:

1) Peak: Sell

2) Early Downturn: Sell or Hold   

3) Full Downturn: Hold or Acquire

4) Bottom: Acquire

5) Early Recovery: Acquire, Develop and Explore Renting

6) Late Stable: Rent, Refinance, Improve, and Prepare for Selling

7) Peak: Sell

Next week we’ll check out more in depth information on each specific cycle and explore various strategies that can be applied to any location, as long as it’s the right time.

Until next time, make sure to Know the Home Before You Buy™ by obtaining your Home Fax™ Report and other real estate information from www.NationwideHomeFax.com and of course, all of your inspection needs from Home Fax™ Inspections!

Sellers Inspections: Benefits & Rewards

Home inspections are most often associated with buyers, but those who choose to have a sellers inspection completed prior to or after listing their home can benefit extraordinarily with their time, purchase price, and stress. 

In short, a sellers inspection is one of the best examples for the cliche saying: "It takes money to make money."

At Home Fax™ Inspections, you always get our 100% satisfaction guarantee, 24 hour report turnaround time, pre and post inspection record checks, innovative and easy to understand reports, as well as supplemental information to help anyone Know the Home Before You Buy™. We adhere to the ASHI Standards of Practice, provide convenient online scheduling and payment tools and are fully licensed, bonded and insured within the State of Michigan.

Here’s how a sellers inspection from Home Fax™ Inspections can help you maximize your sale price as a seller:

  • Schedule the inspection at your convenience and have the ability to assist the inspector during the inspection process, which is otherwise uncommon during a buyer’s inspection.
  • Be alerted to any items of immediate concern ahead of time, instead of during the buy and sell process, lightening last-minute problems and negotiations.
  • Pre-awareness allows you to correct issues beforehand, or price the home at a realistic asking price if problems do exist, helping you save time and money without risking a potential sale.
    • By correcting any issues beforehand, you can review the inspection report prior to being generated and have corrections made, which:
      • Ultimately may encourage buyers to waive the inspection contingency all together in your gesture of forthrightness 
      • Helps your home show better and sell at a higher price, especially when no major issues are identified during the inspection process.
      • Permits you to attach repair invoices to the report that may eliminate prospective buyer suspicions before they walk away without making an offer. 
      • Gives you more time to shop competitive bids and make repairs at the most reasonable price, all while eliminating over-inflated buyer estimates or demands.

No matter your position, there’s no better option than HomeFax™ Inspections! Visit www.HomeFaxInspect.com today to schedule your home inspection or check out our nationwide services at www.NationwideHomeFax.com.

Expectations v. Reality During a Home Inspection

A home inspection is a standard procedure during most home purchases, but many common expectations are met with misconceptions.

#1: A home inspection is a limited visual observation

Many buyers expect an inspector find hidden issues, sometimes discovered later on during the home tenure, such as issues within wall framing, footing drains, and other areas of the inspection that are not exposed. In reality, inspectors can only inspect what is visible and typically exposed. Good inspectors understand the cause-and-effect of one observation to a defect, or set of defects, but the reality is that no inspector can ever determine all of the defects that may exist within or around a home.

#2: A home inspection is not a code inspection

Home inspectors are not code inspectors. Codes vary by city, county, and state. Code inspectors, sometimes referred to as building inspectors, are employed within the city or county and are familiar with specific codes within their specific jurisdiction. Home inspectors are not required to know each city’s codes, which would be very difficult if not impossible, and therefore are not code inspectors. This does not mean your inspector is not a professional or expert. The responsibilities are not the same and buyers should understand that an inspector may not be able to speak to specific codes during an inspection.

#3: Not everything visible is required to be inspected.

Every buyer needs to understand the contingencies around what is not inspected during a standard home inspection. Home inspectors are trained to inspect and describe major systems and components of any home, but often do not include accessories and areas that are excluded from the Standards of Practice and expose the inspector to unnecessary risk. For example, window awnings, pools, furnace humidifiers, gazebos, well water and well depths, and other areas and components are not typically inspected. Buyers should fully understand the contingencies that apply to their inspection, as noted within the pre-inspection agreement.

Whether you are a buyer, seller, or agent let the professionals at Home Fax Inspections fulfill all of your home inspection and seller inspection needs by visiting our website or contacting us directly at 248-229-0945. God Bless!

Top 5 DIY Home Repairs

Home repairs are a common aspect of home ownership, while continuous maintenance will help to protect your most important investment. Although these words bring a mixture of feelings, and even detract some from interest in owning a home, often times they involve simple, easy tasks. Some see home repairs as a challenging adventure, and one best suited for a professional. Although this is sometimes true, many painting, plumbing, landscaping, and regular maintenance tasks are best handled by yourself. Others, though, immediately cringe, minds racing on the thought of all the work and money that will go into the task(s).

Truthfully, those who shy away from common maintenance and home repairs often develop their perspective based on a lack of understanding and education, something Home Fax™ Inspections & Nationwide Home Fax™ desires to help you with.

Check out this article on the Top 5 Home Repairs You Should Do Yourself and educate yourself, or fix your perspective, when it comes to home ownership maintenance, repairs and upkeep.

Home Staging & Decorating Impact for Buyers & Sellers

Buying a new home not only gives you the chance to make a sizable investment into your life & family, but also provides the chance to express your personal style through decorating. However, did you know that what seems like a great decorating choice may actually cause the room to look smaller than it is? Even the flow of the home may feel off.

This may not be costly to a new buyer, but every seller wants their home to sell fast and bring top dollar. No brainer, right? Well, did you know the way your home is decorated & staged may have a tremendous impact on the time and price point of the sale?

Don’t fall victim to home décor mistakes or poor staging -- watch this slide show to learn the top 10 home décor mistakes that make professional designers cringe & this how to stage a house article to increase your chance of success!

Resources like these help you put your best foot forward! 

Informed home buying decisions: Why everyone must Know the Home Before You Buy™

 "Decision making is complex. On our own, our tendency to yield to short-term temptations may be too strong for our rational, long-term planning." -- Peter Singer

The pattern of poor home buying decisions and horror stories of withering financial investments in property purchases never seizes to amaze us.  Whether it be the standpoint of the “unnecessary” expense of a home inspection, to the lack of research and informed decision making conducted prior to purchasing a property, to the economic disparity that leads to poor home maintenance -- more and more people continue to enter into poor home buying decisions. 

As a result, many poor home buying decisions have negatively impacted home sales and values, while increasing the rate of short-sales and foreclosures. The cost of this may be small or great, quickly encountered or experienced later, but one point is consistent for most people: the purchase of a property is one of, if not the largest investment you will make in your lifetime.  How many times will you spend $100k, $200k, or maybe even a $1,000,000 on any one purchase in your lifetime again? Not to mention, don’t we all want ourselves and our family to be happy, safe, and comfortable with the home we live and invest in?  

Let’s face the facts…

We’ve all heard of or experienced the horror story of a new home purchase, rental property, or new move.  Most people consider a home inspection through the process of purchasing a property, but many do not understand the various aspects of the Home, Homeowner, Neighborhood and Community which contribute to their overall long-term happiness, return on investment, and susceptibility of that purchase or lease agreement. 

Inadvertently as a result, poor home ownership decisions and a lack of informed decision making has fostered a higher demand for rental properties; currently averaging $904 per month nationwide. Prior homeowners, and many others, fear the idea of property ownership based on past mistakes, distorted views from TV shows and opinions, and financial struggles that have led them to few additional options other than rental tenancy. The fact of the matter is that many prior homeowners, young adults, and current tenants were never aware, or are still unaware of the options, assistance, and information services available to them.

Next week we will review the Home Fax™ Report options available to buyers, sellers, renters and investors for home purchases from Nationwide Home Fax™ and home inspections from Home Fax™ Inspections.  

Lighting & Decoration Safety Tips for around the home

Lighting & Decoration Safety Tips for around the home

Christmas is upon us with such wonderful celebration of the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ! As the days seem to fly by, keep your family safe with these lighting and decoration safety tips as you prepare for the seasonal festivities around the home:

Lighting

  • Be sure to use Indoor or Outdoor Lights in the correct environment. Most are identifiable by the label. 
  • After checking Outdoor Lights for loose connections, frayed or bare wire, and broken sockets to avoid any fires, secure all strands safely to trees or the house as a preventative measure against wind damage. 
  • No more than three sets of standard size lights should be used with any single extension cord. Check and compare amp and voltage capacities in the breaker if you’re unsure of how much capacity the outlet can handle.

Christmas Trees

  • Most artificial Christmas trees are fire resistant (see label), while real pine trees have more fire hazard risk as they become dry. 
  • When purchasing a real tree, check that it is green, has fresh needles which are hard to pull or shake off, bendable needles that do not break, and a sticky resin present upon the trunk. 
  • Place the real or artificial tree away from radiators or fireplaces, and away from high-traffic areas, including doors. 
  • Never use real lighted candles on any tree, and be sure to keep matches, lighters, and candles away from children’s reach.

Hopefully these quick lighting and decorations safety tips for around the home will make your Christmas holiday brighter and merry! Find more holiday safety tips from The Home Fax™ by checking out these 4 Holiday Safety Tips & Touch-ups for Around the Home.

Please remember the reason for the season:
For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. John 3:16 (KJV) 

Merry Christmas to all!

The Home Fax™ Excerpt Re-Cap

In case you missed any recent blogs from The Home Fax™, check out these quick excerpts and references. When you're finished, don't forget to cash in on the THANKS50 promotion for 50% off any inspection from Home Fax™ Inspections. Hurry, the promotion ends on 12/30/15 and limited scheduling dates are available!

A quality home inspection reaches beyond the scope of a one-day, one-report consultation. Many home buyers have a quality agent who understands and truly cares for their needs. These buyers are educated and informed along the way, leading them into home ownership with success and confidence.

An industry with relatively no change or adaption requires changing, at least a new perspective or unique way of presenting the information. Inspection companies, such as Home Fax™ Inspections, utilize creative ways to enhance and change the way inspection reports are viewed.

Although buyers are most commonly known for having a home inspection completed, many sellers and agents are starting to see the enormous benefits from Seller’s Inspections and Pre-Listing Inspections. 

Learn how to maximize your investment, sale price, or commission by controlling the inspection process as a buyer, agent, and seller. 

Thanksgiving, Christmas and many other holidays bring families together for many reasons. Use these four holiday safety tips and touch ups for around the home as you prepare for your special get together! 

Next Monday we will review lighting and decoration safety tips for around the home as families tend to complete these festive tasks just before the beginning of Christmas. Until then, always remember to Know the Home Before You Buy™ www.HomeFaxInspect.com & www.NationwideHomeFax.com

4 Holiday Safety Tips & Touch-ups for Around the Home

Thanksgiving, Christmas and many other holidays bring families together for many reasons. Use these holiday safety tips and touch ups for around the home as you prepare for your special get-together.

#1: Test smoke detectors (or add if missing)

We all hear about the most common safety issue every year during each holiday, stove and gas fires. Check all existing smoke and carbon monoxide detectors (especially in the kitchen) on each floor of the home, replace any batteries, and add any alarms/detectors where not present already. If you have not already, consider replacing traditional smoke detectors with a smoke and carbon monoxide combination alarm.

#2: Fix or replace broken electrical outlet covers

Replacing any broken electrical outlets is a simple, cheap, and effective way to help keep your family safe. GFCI outlets should be present in all kitchens and bathrooms for over current protection and to help reduce the chance of shock hazards. 

Check along each interior room for any broken outlet plates, especially low areas in the home that are accessible to children. Having a screwdriver handy, tighten any loose plates, make note of which need to be replaced, and head out to your local hardware store!

#3: Clear any tripping hazards & add safety guards along fireplaces

As family and guests arrive, it’s easy to get caught up in all of your obligations that may result in overlooking simple safety risks, such as tripping hazards. By planning ahead, clearing space, adding safety guards along fireplace masonry, and even temporarily re-organizing high traffic areas, your home will become instantly safer. 

Add a shoe rack (permanently or temporarily) near the entrance door, pick up any electrical cords, Christmas lights or other items which may be tripping hazards. You never know, it may prevent an unnecessary trip to the emergency room.

#4: Check water and gas connections

The last thing any of us want to deal with on a busy holiday is fix broken items, or even worse, schedule an emergency repair. Leaks, backups, and clogs are more susceptible with higher traffic in areas, such as the restroom. 

Check and tighten any fixture connections, clear the P-trap, and scan your water heater and furnace. Don’t forget the basement connections...when’s the last time you checked those anyway?

Until next time, check out www.HomeFaxInspect.com and www.NationwideHomeFax.com and be sure to always Know the Home Before You Buy™

ThanksGivingBack at Home Fax Inspections & Nationwide Home Fax

The holidays are among us, and what a wonderful time they are! Many of us are fortunate enough to spend time with our families, celebrate the festivities, and have a warm home with a roof over our heads.

Unfortunately for some though, these times are filled with grief, disappointment, and a feelings of isolation. Residents of Flint, Michigan, for example, are just starting to receive clean drinking water, as their water has been contaminated with lead, yet these residents still pay for their water just as you or I do. 

The number of homeless individuals continues to rise in many areas and states, such as Detroit, Hawaii, Los Angeles, and New York City. Many others face constant persecution, hunger, poverty and more. Some are unemployed and not able to enjoy the time and festivities because of financial burdens, even forced to work through such times just to put food on the table for their family. The list goes on-and-on, people are in need all over the country and world.

Join Home Fax™ Inspections and Nationwide Home Fax™ in the 2nd annual ThanksGivingBack promotion to help families in need. Treat others the way you wish to be treated as Christ himself emphasizes, share the blessings you’ve received to help those in need, and keep these people and families in your thoughts and prayers.

As we journey into the holiday season and beyond, take time enjoying all that the holidays have in store for us, but let us remember our true purpose for why we’re here and help those who are not as fortunate to have the necessities we often take for granted. 

Join us next week as we discuss Holiday safety tips & touch ups for around the home! 

Who’s controlling the inspection process?

During the last segment we discussed some impact examples of a Seller’s Inspection process. In case you missed it, check it out here.

Here’s a real example of how controlling the inspection process effects everyone involved:

A buyer’s inspection was completed on a $160,000 home. ¾” separation gaps were observed along the foundation tuck point where the landscaping grade continuously directed water into the basement windows (which were not insulated and exposed). A broken downspout drainage extension in the same location was directing more water into the same area, causing mold to spread into the basement while penetrating the electrical wires for the control valve box.

Using the inspection report from Home Fax Inspections, the buyers negotiated $25,000 off the price, purchasing the home for $135,000. The buyers resolved the issue for less than $2,000 before taking possession of the home, 2 months later, saving them $23,000. 

Pretty good return on investment for the buyers who paid a $400 inspection price, wouldn’t you say?

Now as a seller or agent, you may be cringing. Why?

Not only did the seller lose out on $23,000 from the purchase price, since they could have made the same repairs for $2,000, but the time it took to close increased the sellers process by around 6 weeks. Since they were relocating, this increased their expense for temporary housing and travel, consumed enormous amounts of their time, and had no positive outcome for the seller who thought they were too busy, and wanted to save money, instead of having the same repairs completed themselves. 

If that was the end of the atrocity, it would be enough. But it wasn’t…

With a 3% commission, the buyer and seller agent each lost approximately $1,000 (or 25% of their total commission percentage) and invested hours, days, and weeks of additional time, potentially leading to the loss of additional sales or clients as a result.

Needless to say, a seller’s inspection would have saved enormous amounts of time, money, and hassle. Don’t wait until it’s too late to control the inspection process. Work smarter, not harder.

Sellers Inspections: Advantages for Sellers, Agents & Buyers

Although buyers are most commonly known for having a home inspection completed, many sellers and agents are starting to see the enormous benefits from Seller’s Inspections and Pre-Listing Inspections. 

This approach has positive benefits for the seller, buyer, and agent.

  • During a Seller’s Inspection, the inspector works for the seller. 
  • This allows the seller to assist the inspector during the inspection
  • Become aware of any safety issues or defects before a buyer walks away
  • Shop competitive bids to repair any defects (or lighten the effect of a surprise defect)
  • Price the home accordingly (instead of renegotiating the purchase price with inflated demands) &
  • Have corrections made to the report that can be used as a marketing tool for sellers and agents.

Ultimately, buyers may waive their inspection contingency all together, potentially saving sellers tens of thousands of dollars from the purchase price, while increasing the commission amount of the agent and broker.

Check back as next time we’ll discuss how controlling the home inspection process will save you time, money, and hassle.

3 Uncommon Home Inspection Benefits

Although a home inspection is always a smart investment, many home inspectors facilitate a bland, checklist style report. Hard to read and engage in, sometimes with unclear explanations and photos that provide little clarity. Eventually it’s filed and forgotten about, with education and impact opportunities fallen by the wayside. 

An industry with relatively no change or adaption requires changing, at least a new perspective or unique way of presenting the information. Inspection companies, such as Home Fax™ Inspections, utilize creative ways to enhance and change the way inspection reports are viewed.

#1: No home is perfect. Every home requires continuous maintenance.

One of the most important purposes of an inspection is to show a buyer what’s truly impacting their safety, well-being, and investment. People perceive differently, but consistency and clarity help avoid confusion and misunderstanding.  The way many reports are presented and communicated often determine a buyer’s perspective.

A checklist with multiple ‘defects’ running down a seemingly never ending list has a different effect than a consistent set of impact ratings that change “Satisfactory” comments (which is the most positive expression used by most inspectors) into Low Impact ratings that show a buyer, ‘this is a positive aspect’, not a defect or deterrent.

#2: Every home has a story

Streamlined processes and organized flow of observations tell the story about your home, instead of checklists that fail to paint a picture because they’re disorganized to readers. Understand how a missing downspout extension affects the vapor barrier that led to mold and water penetration in the basement windows through a process of organized steps, for instance. 

#3: Limitations on reports  

Many inspectors are restricted and prohibited from fully inspecting the property and gathering additional information that reaches beyond the scope of the inspection. As a result, many buyers do not receive supplemental records, such as Environmental Records and Hazards Reports, which may have a serious effect on their family’s well-being, health and safety.

True story: Home Fax Inspections viewed a 1,200 sq. ft. single story residence that was 20 years old, built in 1994, on 3 acres of land. Vertical cracks were present on the interior kitchen floor, with small staircase cracks along the wall facing the exterior. The outside corner, near the same exterior wall, had a 2” separation along the foundation. Environmental records showed that an underground river was running directly through that same section of the homes foundation; the home was destined to crumble from the moment it was constructed.

If you’re thinking everyone, or at least everyone you hired would know that, why was a house constructed on a 3 acre parcel in the only small area that had an underground river? They didn’t know. 

Even more, a standard inspection report would only tell you that 1) a structural crack was observed, and 2) staircase cracks were observed along the wall. 

Which example paints the true picture? Know the Home Before You Buy

Agents, are your clients getting the most out of their home inspection?

A quality home inspection reaches beyond the scope of a one-day, one-report consultation. Many home buyers have a quality agent who understands and truly cares for their needs. These buyers are educated and informed along the way, leading them into home ownership with success and confidence.

Unfortunately though, some buyers do not come to ever fully understand the purpose of a home inspection, and sometimes not until it’s too late. Often times the lack of understanding is the result of an uninformed viewpoint that the home inspection is ‘just another check in the process.’ 

Every home inspection should be considered an investment into the purchase of a property. Although a meager sum of the typical home price, a quality inspection report serves, among many purposes, as a continuous reference point for the owner, short and long-term.

  • Agents, do your buyers have the chance to sit down and review the inspection report with you? 
  • Do you follow up with the inspector after a buyer has received an inspection?
  • Do you offer the buyer an opportunity to clear any misunderstanding or clarify anything about the home that may be beyond the scope the inspection?
  • Receive critical environmental records that may contribute to their well-being?
  • Home maintenance tips, easy-to-understand graphs or presentations, or even an explanation of the inspector’s role in the home buying process?

The first step in maximizing the learning process for a buyer is having the right inspector.

So, are your client’s getting the most out of their home inspections?

Check out www.HomeFaxInspect.com and see how else Home Fax™ Inspections helps you look good and your client’s Know the Home Before You Buy™. Looking for additional real estate information services in the mean time? Check out Nationwide Home Fax™ and learn other ways to make informed home buying decisions today!