What to Look for When Buying a House

Starting your journey to buying a new home can feel intimidating at first, with so many options and possibilities. While many people like to think about what they want, many have to make choices based on what is realistic for them and their budget. Here we will go over what to look for when buying a house that will be a good investment for years to come. 

Top Features

Different people have different preferences when looking for a new home, and many must prioritize them to decide what is most valuable for them when buying a house. Buyers want their neighborhood to feel safe, be walkable, be close to shopping or leisure activities, have a manageable commute to their work or school, give a sense of community, and be close to family or friends. Features that buyers value include being within their budget, air conditioning, the correct number of bedrooms and bathrooms, private outdoor space, and having the size and layout they were looking for. 

Setting Your Budget

While price is perhaps the most prominent factor when buying a home, Zillow conducted research that found that 27% of buyers went over budget while only 17% spent less than they budgeted. Buyers can set their budget range using their monthly income, monthly bills and down payment amount. You can also receive a loan based on your income, debts and credit history. Keep in mind that you must also account for taxes, homeowners’ insurance, and potentially homeowner association fees. 

What to Look for When Buying a House

Make Location a Priority

If you can’t afford a home in your ideal location, work with your agent to determine a location that best fits your needs and budget. Homes closer to the heart of downtown are usually more expensive, however, as workers shift to remote work, less value is being placed on commute times. If you want to be within walking distance to restaurants, consider checking out the area beforehand and seeing what kind of attractions are nearby. If you like your peace and quiet and do not mind driving, consider locations off the beaten path. If you are a parent, looking for a school district with the best education is critical when buying a new home. Visiting some schools before you buy is usually the best way to get a feel for the school system in that area. The last thing to consider would be potential hazards in the area, for example, if your home is in a flood zone, you will often have to purchase extra insurance coverage apart from your ordinary policy.

Plan for the Future

The average homeowner stays in their home for at least 14 years before moving on, so make sure that you consider your future needs. It could be an extra room for a child, a guest bedroom for visitors, or for rental income. If you work from home, make sure your needs are met with assigned space for your office or another type of workspace. Outdoor space is also vital to plan for when buying a home, allowing you a space for parties, kids or pets to play, or simply somewhere to relax. If you are a buyer who likes to add a bit of flair to your home, ensure that you buy a house that allows for the improvements you want to install. Make sure that the home you buy fits your lifestyle, for instance, if you enjoy cooking, look for the necessary amenities in the kitchen or if you enjoy being outside, look for nearby hiking trails.

What to Look for When Buying a House

Observe Property Condition

Home renovations are occasionally precarious and can be overwhelming for a first-time homebuyer. These renovations can also be expensive, especially when running into unexpected issues. Buying a home that is already fixed up can take a lot of hassle out of the buying process and can even save you money in the long run. Repairs to be aware of when buying a home include cosmetic issues as well as systems that could be updated for purposes such as energy savings. Homes that require a large number of repairs could even delay your move-in, while homes that need an upgrade to a single space can be done once you are already moved in. If you find aspects of the home that will be costly to repair, inquire to the seller asking if those items could be fixed prior to moving in. Take extra caution when evaluating the roof, HVAC system, water damage, insulation, plumbing, cracks, uneven floors and windows, as these can become costly to repair. 

Minor Cosmetics Don’t Matter

Many affordable houses found on the market today are not going to be flawless. Minor changes such as paint, hardware, furnishing and landscaping are somewhat inexpensive and straightforward to replace. Try to envision the house as bare as possible, as that is how it will be upon move-in. 

Are you Ready to Buy a Home?

Remember when starting this process to stick to your list of wants versus needs and act accordingly. You could find a home that checks all of your boxes, however, you will likely have to settle on a few of the items. If this is the case, make sure you are taking care of your needs before your wants! 

If you’d like to get personal advice on getting the highest value for your home, the real estate agents from Velocity Realty can help! Give us a call at (403) 603-6800, or click here to get in contact with us!

Joey Bergandi of Velocity Realty has been helping San Diego Buyers and Sellers successfully for the last five years. Joey’s ideology of Real Estate stems from transparency and communication. He believes that all transactions begin and end with direct conversations and honest expectations. If you are looking to start the process today, call Joey at (408) 603-6800!

Mistakes to Avoid When Buying a Home

Buying a home is often one of the most significant financial decisions a person will ever make. It can feel like a formidable responsibility with so many things to consider, such as house size, neighborhood location, and what the house needs before moving in. The financial concerns that come with the home-buying process can also make this procedure stressful for the buyer. 

Outspending your Budget

When starting the home-buying process, you have to know how much you can realistically afford. It is wise to allocate 30% of your overall budget to home-related expenses including taxes, maintenance, utilities and insurance. This percentage should also cover the down payment, one-time and recurring costs related to owning a home, and closing costs. This budget will allow you to understand what you can legitimately afford and prevent you from running out of money in the future. 

Mistakes to Avoid When Buying a Home

Overlooking Mortgage Options

If you intend to take out a loan, a loan officer will be able to tell you which loan you qualify for, how much interest you will be paying and the estimated monthly mortgage payments. Many home buyers accept the first loan offer they get without comparing different lenders first. This is important to make sure you are getting the best interest rate or even an opportunity to pay off the loan early. When considering a VA or FHA loan, ensure that you compare it to a traditional loan because while they require a lower down payment, they could cost more in the long run because of mortgage insurance and interest rates.

Working with the wrong agent

It is imperative to work with an experienced agent who keeps your best interests in mind and has worked with many buyers. Your agent should find a house that fits your criteria both financially and physically. If your agent is constantly pushing you to go over budget or use your entire budget, it could be wise to consider working with a new agent.

Choosing Wants Over Needs

It is common for buyers to get caught up in the home-buying process and start spending money on unnecessary amenities. It is good to keep a list throughout the process, one section with the items you must have and one with things you would like to have in your future home. This will keep your goals and budget restrictions clear throughout looking at different homes. 

Skipping the Due Diligence

It is always crucial to get things in writing throughout the course of home-buying because purchasing a home is a legally binding contract that should be as detailed as possible before signing. For example, when you see a house that has things you like, you can’t rely on the buyer to leave them based on a verbal agreement, hence, it is always best to get everything in writing. 

Mistakes to Avoid When Buying a Home

Forgoing the Home Inspection

While deferring the home inspection can be enticing, inspections are vital to uncovering any problems that could not be seen otherwise, such as electrical problems or even termites. These inspections usually cost between $300 and $500 but spending that money could save you from even higher costs in the future.   

Looking to Buy a Home?

Before starting your home-buying journey, create a budget and make sure that you do not buy more house than you can afford. You should also keep in mind that buying a home can impact your ability to save for other things such as emergencies or retirement. If you’d like to get personal advice on getting the highest value for your home, the real estate agents from Velocity Realty can help! Give us a call at (403) 603-6800, or click here to get in contact with us!

Joey Bergandi of Velocity Realty has been helping San Diego Buyers and Sellers successfully for the last five years. Joey’s ideology of Real Estate stems from transparency and communication. He believes that all transactions begin and end with direct conversations and honest expectations. If you are looking to start the process today, call Joey at (408) 603-6800!

As a smart homeowner, you probably see your home not only as the place you live, but also as one of the best ways to build wealth through home equity. When the time comes where you sell your home, you’ll surely want to increase its value! Is it possible? You betcha! This blog will go over 4 simple ways to maximize the value of your home before selling!

1. Enhance the Home’s Aesthetics

As we all know, the first thing one looks at when buying a home is its appearance. That’s right; we’re talking about home remodeling! A home’s exterior needs to make prospective buyers want to walk through the entrance, and the home’s interior should make them not want to leave. If you have a part of your home that’s just, “meh,” you’ll probably want to start there. For example, if your bathroom looks like it’s still in the ’60s, you may want to consider remodeling it. Essential parts of the home, like bathrooms, are decisive features that buyers look at carefully. If it seems like it’ll discourage someone, it’ll be smart to consider a remodel. The most popular home improvement projects that are known to increase the value of homes include:

2. Update the Essentials

You want to make your home as low maintenance as possible. Buyers usually look for homes that are move-in ready. If your home requires a lot of maintenance and replacements, it’ll probably discourage many buyers. We recommended replacing major components such as water heaters, furnaces, or even roofs! If you can reduce the buyer’s level of anxiety, it’ll make a difference when you’re selling.

3. Make it More Energy Efficient

Did you know that energy conservation features can have a major impact on the value of your home? Especially here in Southern California! Buyers often look for features that help reduce their energy bills and negative impact on the planet. Popular features that make homes energy efficient include:

4. Spruce Up Your Landscaping

As previously mentioned, first impressions matter! The inside of your home isn’t the only part that matters—the outside does too! Don’t let potential homebuyers judge a book by its cover. You can spend a little and gain a lot by landscaping your home’s exterior. Mow the lawn, trim the trees, add some color with beautiful plants! Try to create an eye-catching front yard that’ll draw buyers in—not away!

recently landscaped backyard

Homes are some of the greatest assets people have that hold enormous value, so wanting to make the most of it when selling is normal! We hope this blog helped you see how to maximize the value of your home before selling! If you’d like to get personal advice on getting the highest value for your home, the real estate agents from Velocity Realty can help! Give us a call at (403) 603-6800, or click here to get in contact with us!

Joey Bergandi of Velocity Realty has been helping San Diego Buyers and Sellers successfully for the last five years. Joey’s ideology of Real Estate stems from transparency and communication. He believes that all transactions begin and end with direct conversations and honest expectations. If you are looking to start the process today, call Joey at (408) 603-6800!

You only get one chance to make a great first impression, and what impression your home makes matters greatly. You might be considering whether to sell your house in the upcoming months or just trying to become the best-looking home in the neighborhood. Some simple and impactful upgrades can help your place look its best during the 2021 fall season. We call it seasonal self-care for your house.

Decorate Your Home with Fall Florals

Use planters with fall flowers at your front door and hang baskets to create a quick and easy fall appeal. The leaves don’t turn that much in San Diego, so use mums and autumn beauties to deliver a cheerful pop of color.

Fall Florals (Add Value This Fall with These 7 Curb Appeal Trends)

Add Decorations to Your Front Door

A tasteful wreath of fall foliage will make your front door a focal point. If your front door color is starting to fade, you might even want to paint it a color that stands out. Consider red, black, or yellow to get trendy this fall season.

Red Door with Fall decor

Buy a New Welcome Mat

The most cost-efficient way to update your front entrance is to change out a doormat. It’s not fall yet if you still have your ‘Sweet Summertime’ doormat at the entryway.

Door mat (Add Value This Fall with These 7 Curb Appeal Trends)

Add a Comfortable Bench

A simple garden bench or some more sophisticated porch seating options would look cozy and welcoming this fall season and all year round.

Invest In the Outdoor Lighting

Tasteful lighting helps extend your living space outside your walls, and it helps highlight your decorations. Lanterns and floodlights can help illuminate the front porch and brighten your walkways. But that’s not the only benefit of adding more lighting. Landscape lighting keeps your home safe and secure while adding ambiance and creating a more inviting impression. According to the 2018 Remodeling Impact Report on Outdoor Features by the National Association of Realtors, homeowners can expect to recoup on average 50% of the costs of adding landscape lighting.

Illuminate walkways

Experiment with Window Boxes

What would it look like if you added tasteful wood or metal planter boxes under your windows? Planter boxes are known for instantly adding the idyllic charm to a house.

Window Box (Add Value This Fall with These 7 Curb Appeal Trends)

What Do Your House Numbers Look Like?

House numbers are not the first thing homeowners think about when they look for ways to improve curb appeal, but this is usually the first thing visitors look for when arriving at your home. The first step would be to ensure the house numbers are visible from the street. Then look for house numbers that match the style of your home. Depending on your preference, they can be modern or rustic. Custom house numbers always add personalization and welcoming touch.

House Numbers

Ready to Prepare Your Home for Sale?

Real estate professionals agree that buyers are willing to pay more for houses with great curb appeal. At Velocity Realty, we have a record of proven success working with sellers, and we can provide advice for painting, landscaping, staging, and other upgrades to present your home at its best. We invite you to use our home valuation tool since knowing how much your home is worth is essential for successfully selling your property. If you’re ready to get started, give Velocity Realty a call at (403) 603-6800, or click here to get in contact with us!

Joey Bergandi of VelocityRealty has been helping San Diego Buyers and Sellers successfully for the last 5 years. Joey’s ideology of Real Estate stems from transparency and communication. He believes that all transactions begin and end with direct conversations and honest expectations. If you are looking to start the process today, call Joey at (408) 603-6800!

Couple buying their first home (5 Tips for First Time Home Buyers0

So you’re ready to buy your first home—or at least, you think you are. As you’re on your laptop scrolling through online listings, you may feel lightyears away from being handed the keys to your new home. In between, there are a lot of steps that involve loans, your credit score, and more. It’s a huge amount to navigate, especially for first-time homebuyers. So how do you know where to start? Is getting a home even possible? Lucky for you, helping people find their home is our forte! That’s why we compiled a list of tips for first time home buyers to keep in mind while buying their first home. Here’s how to navigate through the uncharted waters of being a first-time homebuyer:

1. Be Sure You’re Ready To Commit To A Loan

While the thought of buying a house is really exciting, you have to first ensure that you’re ready to commit to a loan. Buying a home means increasing your responsibilities! The average mortgage loan term is 15 – 30 years. While you don’t have to commit to living here for that long, you should plan on committing to the home for at least five years. A few questions you can ask yourself before making a decision include:

If your answer was no to any of these questions, you might want to halt for the moment and think about it a little further. Postponing your plans isn’t a bad thing. You could continue saving money and doing research until you know that you’re ready!

2. Identify your Needs

Now that you know that you’re fully committed and ready to get a home, you can continue to the next step: identifying your needs! A house plays a significant role in your life, so you’ll want to make sure you get the right one. While you may have dreamed of getting a huge two-story home with a giant pool, is it really something you need? Take the time to analyze where you’re at in life right now and where you’re planning to go in the future. Decipher what it is you truly need compared to what it is you want. Do you need separate bedrooms for the kids? Are you willing to commute farther to work if it means living in a certain neighborhood or community? Make a list of your needs and wants! Having a clear understanding of your home needs will help you identify the most important elements to look for when viewing homes.

3. Build Your Savings Now

Don’t wait until you’ve found your home— start saving now! The sooner you start, the better off you’ll be! You can start by setting up an automatic transfer to your savings account after receiving a paycheck. You can also set aside some bonuses and tax refunds and save them for your future home.

You can also look for ways to cut costs on your current spending habits. For example, packing your own lunch to work can cut down on the amount you spend on food every month.

Fortifying your savings account now is essential since there will be many expenses you will need to pay for throughout your home homebuying process. These expenses include:

Boosting your savings account will help you be prepared for expenses that may occur after you move into your new home.

Lady building her credit

4. Build Your Credit

When it comes to buying a home, we all know how important your score can be. Lenders use your credit score as a key factor in determining whether or not to approve you. It is also used to determine interest rates and other loan terms that can come up.

As a first time home buyer, you may not know all of the dos and don’ts. The most common credit mistakes first time homebuyers make that you should avoid include:

5. Hire a Real Estate Agent

Don’t do it alone, especially if you’re a first time home buyer! A real estate agent will work with you to ensure that your needs and best interests are being met throughout the entire purchasing process. Selecting an experienced agent that will guide you through the negotiation and closing process efficiently is important! However, how do you find a good real estate agent? Fortunately, Velocity Realty has the best real estate team for you! You can count on us to explain each step and coach you through each milestone, at any time of day or night! We’ve helped many first time buyers get their dream home, and can help you too! We hope these tips for first time home buyers help prepare you for your home-buying journey! If you’re ready to get started, give Velocity Realty a call at (403) 603-6800, or click here to get in contact with us!

Joey Bergandi of VelocityRealty has been helping San Diego Buyers and Sellers successfully for the last 5 years. Joey’s ideology of Real Estate stems from transparency and communication. He believes that all transactions begin and end with direct conversations and honest expectations. If you are looking to start the process today, call Joey at (408) 603-6800!

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3 Bedrooms , 2 Baths
1,215 sq ft (Assessor’s Record)

MLS #210022029

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Check out this beautiful, upgraded single-level home that is ready for it’s next family! First off, the SOLAR is PAID OFF! Located in this gorgeous Oceanside neighborhood, this 3 bedroom 2 bathroom home is move-in ready with an open floor plan, wood floors, fresh paint, and a wonderful backyard. Upon entry is the living room with beautiful natural light and an open layout, followed by a quaint dining room that backs up to the sliding door with a view of the large backyard. Next to it is the desirable kitchen with white cabinets, granite countertops, and upgraded appliances. The rest of this 1215 sq ft home is filled with 2 large guest bedrooms, 1 full bathroom, the spacious master suite with a sliding door to the backyard, and the roomy master bathroom with a closed off door to the toilet and shower. In the backyard are grand trees that provide privacy and shade, as well as a gated fence to enclose your new back porch and fire pit. Among all of the perks, there is ample storage in the garage and a quiet street for you to nestle into. Call Today!

Schedule a showing here !

Joey Bergandi of VelocityRealty has been helping San Diego Buyers and Sellers successfully for the last 5 years. Joey’s ideology of Real Estate stems from transparency and communication. He believes that all transactions begin and end with direct conversations and honest expectations. If you are looking to start the process today, call Joey at (408)603-6800!

This is one of my favorite questions that I receive as a San Diego Realtor. What is, How to Make MONEY in Real Estate? Equity is this magic thing that you can not touch with your hands until you sell. This Equity can be described as the Cash that you walk away from the sale with. The best part of equity is that there are two different types! First, you are paying down your principle balance and second, is the market appreciation. In San Diego, we have one of the hottest markets, where our appreciate rate this year has been over 12%! Let’s break both of these items down.

  1. When you are making monthly payments on your home, you are paying your principal and interest. The aim is to pay both of these items off and have a fully paid off home. Let’s specifically connect your equity and your principal. Let’s say that your Loan Amount is $500,000. Your Principal balance is $500,000. Every month as you make your mortgage payment, let’s call is $1,000 goes towards principal. After one year, that’s $12,000 of principal balance that you have paid down. So $500,000-$12,000 = $488,000. After 3 years, $500,000- $36,000 = $464,000 . This is the simplest way to explain it. Every month, your mortgage stays the same but amounts towards interest and principle change. Your interest payment starts high , and your principal payment starts lower. Overtime, they slowly switch as you pay less interest each month and more principal each month.
  2. That is a great start as your principal is paid down, but it gets even better when you include market appreciation. On average, our San Diego Market has grown at 4.9% over the last 40 years. Better yet, we are growing over 12% this year! So let’s say that we are looking at your $500,000 home , in one year, it will (hypothetically) be worth $524,500. At year two, it be will (hypothetically) be worth $550,200.50. Lastly, at year three, it will (hypothetically) be worth $577,160.32. Now, let’s combine the two.
  3. When we take into the principal balance and the market appreciation from our examples, we see our equity! So with the principal paid down to $464,000 after 3 years, and home appreciation to $577,160.32, your equity is up to $113,160.32. That shows how crazy of an investment a home purchase in San Diego is! That is an average of $37,720.10 a year on a $500,000 home! Numbers are the best way to answer the question of, how to make MONEY in Real Estate!

If you are looking to find your exact equity on your home in San Diego, feel free to click here and hit Contact us!

Looking for more info on How to WIN as a San Diego First Time Home Buyer? Click here!

Joey Bergandi of VelocityRealty has been helping San Diego Buyers and Sellers successfully for the last 5 years. Joey’s ideology of Real Estate stems from transparency and communication. He believes that all transactions begin and end with direct conversations and honest expectations. If you are looking to start the process today, call Joey at (408)603-6800!

As a San Diego Realtor, I have first hand experience at how hard it can be to buy your first home. We are currently in the midst of a strong Seller’s market where scores of eager buyers are willing to go to the extreme’s to write a winning offer. Agents are advising Buyers to be as aggressive as possible, when there are ways to still find success, without giving up your first born child. Even though it is hard, it is NOT IMPOSSIBLE. Let’s help you win as a San Diego First Time Home Buyer. Here are some tips that I use to help those in the same position as you.

  1. Understand your Situation.
    • The most difficult part of the home search is finding exactly what you are looking for. Most families begin looking for a home in San Diego by randomly scouring the internet. My first piece of advice is to map out your realistic expectations for a home. This process is the most difficult and you should rely on your San Diego Realtor. As the market expert, it will be a much easier task. For example, if you want to live in La Mesa and you love the homes there, do not look for the same type of home in La Jolla.
  2. View Homes with a Purpose.
    • Whether it is a Saturday morning, or a Thursday night after work, only view homes that you are seriously considering. There is no need to spend time going to a home that you are not sure of. As you are walking through these homes, make sure you are paying attention. You want to make sure that you are looking at all of the small nooks and crannies of that home. Even though the San Diego Real Estate Market still has low inventory, you do not skim over any home. Especially as a San Diego First Time Home Buyer, you want to be able to understand that home. Please feel free to look under the sinks, open all of the doors, and check out the entirety of that home.
  3. Be Intentional with your Offers.
    • Currently, there are no “games” to be played. It does not matter if you are looking for a home in El Cajon, Pacific Beach, or Encinitas, you must start with your best foot forward. I always advise my clients to offer like this is their only option. Now, as a San Diego Realtor, I am not advise to ditch your contingencies and give them your blood type. I always suggest to shorten your timelines, offer strong in price, and be quick.
  4. Commit and Trust the Process.
    • This is by far the hardest step. You will have to repeat steps 2 and 3 a lot. Buying a home is not a cake walk in this current market, but it is by far one of the most satisfying! As soon as you put together your winning combination and get your offer accepted, the blessings of the San Diego Market will start to flood in. One of the best parts about Home Ownership in San Diego is the Equity. I can not wait to share the break down of equity in one of my next blogs.

As you complete these Four Steps to buy a home in San Diego, you will find success. Be patient, trust the process, and lean on Velocity Realty to help you!

To view this home’s website, click here.

Joey Bergandi of Velocity Realty has been helping San Diego Buyers and Sellers successfully for the last 5 years. Joey’s ideology of Real Estate stems from transparency and communication. He believes that all transactions begin and end with direct conversations and honest expectations. If you are looking to start the process today, call Joey at (408)603-6800!

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