tips 4 buying, increasing house value & renting

Buing a house Increasing the value of your house House renting (for Investors)

Things to consider when buying a house
  • Calculate the monthly repayment you can afford. Total your income less your expenses. Banks typically grant a maximum bond where the repayment is no more than 25% of your gross monthly salary. Use the bond calculator to assist you.
  • Calculate your conveyancing and transfer costs. While some banks may give you a 100% bond they do not finance the transfer costs.
  • Remember the three most important rules to remember when buying a property, area, area and area. It is therefore advisable to purchase a smaller property in a better area.
  • Consult your potential neighbours and local police with regards to security in the area i.e. any recent burglaries in the area etc. Large tracts of vacant adjoining land can attract vagrants and squatters.
  • Consider the local schools and check on availability before buying.
  • Ensure the building is structurally sound i.e. there are no cracks in the walls, ceilings etc.
  • Look carefully for damp spots or moisture as this may indicate a leak or rising damp.
  • Enquire as to which fixtures and fittings are to be sold with the property.
  • Ask to see the approved plans, or ask the seller if there are any illegal structures that have not been approved.
  • Ask if there are any defects in the property that are not visible, as the seller is obliged to tell you.
  • If the property is a sectional title unit, ask for audited financials to make sure the body corporate is well run and solvent.
  • If you have any doubts we recommend that you consult a specialist to do an inspection before you sign any documents.

Increasing the value of your house
  • Many homebuyers drive past several homes before deciding which ones to visit with a realtor. Be sure that your home looks as good as possible from the outside.
  • Make sure that your lawn is mowed and the edges are well trimmed.
  • An otherwise boring yard can look like a showplace with a few carefully placed shrubs and flowering plants.
  • Keep your driveway clean and uncluttered. Sweep it daily when your home is on the market.
  • Oil your doors, too; you may not notice a squeaking hinge after living with it for a while, but prospective buyers will wonder what else needs maintenance.
  • Guests waiting at your front door will have time to inspect the entry. If your doorbell looks old or doesn't work well, replace it. A new coat of paint on the door and frame, a bug-free light fixture, and a shiny doorknob can dramatically improve a buyer's impressions.
  • Your home should always be clean smelling. If you have pets in your home, be sure that their cages, beds and litter areas are kept smell-free. Likewise, if there are smokers in your household, they should smoke outside while the house is being shown.
  • Be sure that your home looks bright and cheerful. Keep your curtains open. Have trees and shrubs pruned so that they don't block light. Also consider slightly pink-tinted or full spectrum "natural" light bulbs to create a warm glow for your home.
  • During the weeks when buyers are visiting, hire a cleaning service if you don't have the time to keep your home pristinely clean. One deep-cleaning session followed by weekly or twice-weekly visits can be enough.
  • Stay current with your laundry and keep dirty clothes out of sight. When buyers visit, be sure that your kitchen and bathroom towels are fresh.
  • Remember that a bright, cheerful, clean and welcoming home is what buyers are looking for.

House renting tips – for Investors
  • Have tenants share some of the responsibilities. If you have a small yard, require the tenant take care of lawn. Provide tenants with tools they need such as a mower, rake or spade and assist whenever possible.
  • Collect utilities in advance. Often utilities will be in your name and difficult to recoup from tenants, especially after they are no longer renting your house. Determine the average cost of utilities used and include that amount in the rent.
  • Make the tenant feel at home. When renting a house, you want the tenant to stick around for a long time. Do something special, or provide a service that makes it hard for your tenants to want to leave.
  • Pre-install DSTV. Your tenants will want this anyway so you are better off having it professionally installed. It will help you rent the house and avoid tenants drilling holes in your walls.

Copyright©2007. All rights reserved
Best Browser - Internet Explorer 6; Resolution - 800x600
Designed by
Interexcel - Web Design and web site design are the specialists of this Pretoria based company.