Wednesday, January 02, 2013

Will my real estate agent do all the research about a house I am thinking of buying?

I have been working with a buyer who is watching a specific home which is going through the foreclosure process.  She is doing her homework.   This week she learned there is a registered sex offender in the neighborhood.

She is researching the history of the individual case (and any other legal issues).  Does he own the property or is he renting?  How long has he lived there?  Most of these answer can be found in online public records.

This highlights two important considerations.
  1. Do your homework before buying
  2. You can know who lives nearby when you buy but not in the future.
Your real estate agent can show you properties that meet your search parameters like price range, structure age, square footage, school district, beach side, rural, etc. but as a buyer you must perform your own due diligence as well
  • Worried about crime, check with local law enforcement officials.
  • Wonder if there are sexual offenders in the area, check the state sexual offender database.  
  • Curious about the nearby public schools, research the local schools and visit them.  
  • Wonder what the neighborhood is like after all the kids are home from school and people return from work, visit in the evening or weekend.
  • Wonder how the neighbors like living in the area, ask them.  Walk the neighborhood.
  • Wonder how the homeowner association is doing, attend a meeting and ask for a financial disclosure or summary from the seller. More importantly, REVIEW THE ASSOCIATION DOCUMENTS BEFORE BUYING.
As a buyer many of these areas can be just as important as a property inspection (or more) as they impact your future quality of life.

Call me if you are thinking of  buying or selling a house or condo in Brevard County, Florida.

 Research homes for sale in Melbourne, Florida here.