It is so easy to fall in love with the “money shot” that it can cause a home buyer to forget how to evaluate a home purchase. In real estate it is always emphasized that “location, location, location” is what counts. And there is truth to that. Which is why I wanted to share this home in my blog. At first glance the home looks like an impressive compound. It’s got that elegant “money” look to it. So thanks to Google Space and Street View technology I was immediately shocked to find the front gate banged up and entrance featuring an old office chair prominently on display. In addition the seller excluded photo angles that reveal a barren desert dirt front yard, which if I were to buy this property would end up becoming a dust bowl on a windy day – not uncommon for California! The street view picture across the street is the neighbor across the street – a home that is quite a bit different in dimension, style and size. Which would lead me to ask “who would buy this property?” Honestly there always a buyer for any home at the right price, but it is clear the featured sale property is well overbuilt for this neighborhood and is quite possibly the biggest and nicest in the neighborhood. So how would that work out if you were currently the owner trying to sell this house? Would you know someone who is willing to buy this home? It’s possible. If you want to avoid surprises one of the questions home buyers need to ask themselves is, if their situation changed would they want to be the one having to sell this house. Again, there always a buyer for a home at the right price, but being that seller is easier said than done. In high density city areas we can usually find plentiful comparable sales. But in my experience the further your travel from urban sprawl the less information will I find for a given neighborhood. That doesn’t bode well for buyers that need a loan to purchase a home if the bank has to stretch over many miles and calendar months of home sales to determine a fair market value. A lack of sales data sure will make the sale of a property more difficult to compel buyers. In this case, this seller might do just fine selling this beautiful home and find themselves having no difficulty finding a qualified buyer. The point is as a buyer, you have to picture yourself as the potential seller first to ensure there are no surprises as a buyer. Asking lots of questions about real estate trends in a neighborhood is something a competent and qualified realtor is happy to do. In my case I even shake hands with the neighbors face to face by door knocking a few times a week just to keep up so that I know what buyers and sellers are not only doing, but where there thinking is so that new buyers get the best possible information to make an informed decision. Avoid surprises by slowing down, taking a closer look, imagine yourself the owner and potentially seller first – this is a great way to avoid pitfalls and start your home buying process.
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