· Smarter Shopper,housing market,neighborhood report

Location. Location. Location. Those are the famed three most important factors when considering buying a house. But seriously, how do you evaluate what is a good buy? First, you want to think about if it's in a safe neighborhood, preferably with access to good schools. Then you want to figure out the proximity to good high paying jobs. Is it in a growing area? Is there access to restaurants, entertainment, community events? Is the home updated? Is it in good condition? Hire a home inspector to take a look and come back with a full report. Are there any termite issues? How is the plumbing? Any unique features? What is the price per square foot? How does it compare to the median price per square foot for that area? How is the air quality? You can check that online. What do the neighbors think? Last, but definitely not least, what is the price-to-rent ratio? Hopefully, this line of questioning has helped you take a hard look past the fluff that you might read in the real estate listing description, and to see past the nicely staged furniture. To evaluate value, it's not just the things you notice but lots of details you might not notice. If you would like a free detailed neighborhood report of a home that you are interested in, email me with the zip code you are interested in here.

Hope that helps. Feel free to contact me if you have any questions at 949.667.2887 or info@hightouchlending.com.

- Brian Nguyen is a senior loan consultant (NMLS 659743) who learned more about this stuff than he ever intended to. The opinions expressed here are solely his own.

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