Questions tagged [real-estate]

A tag for questions on real estate or property.

Filter by
Sorted by
Tagged with
20
votes
5answers
17k views

What is the purpose of property tax?

I currently rent, but have been looking to buy a home. I always imagined how great it would be to have a dream home, worth, say, $500K, and to have it fully paid off. My thought was the only recurring ...
20
votes
7answers
31k views

What is a good rental yield?

If you are thinking of buying a property for investment purposes, what is a good gross yield? I've been told you should take 3 zero's off the price of the property, so if a property is worth 400,000, ...
19
votes
7answers
2k views

Is Real Estate ever a BAD investment? If so, when?

Even in a bad market, over 30 years won't the value of Real Estate always go up? Is it always a sure bet? If not, what should an investor or buyer consider?
19
votes
8answers
7k views

Should I wait until I have a 20% down payment to buy a home?

With an FHA loan that only requires a 3.5% down payment, I'm able to buy a home right now and comfortably afford the monthly payments. However, I know that means I'll pay PMI and more interest over ...
19
votes
3answers
4k views

Is it possible to sell a rental property WHILE tenants are living there?

I am thinking about selling my rental property, but currently there are tenants living there. Is it possible to "hand over" the current leases to a buyer/landlord or do I have to wait for all the ...
19
votes
2answers
704 views

Is selling your house without an agent worth the hassle?

There have been numerous "for sale by owner" signs appearing recently. This seems like a convenient way to reduce the commission charged by Real Estate agents but I have heard that this is still a "...
18
votes
6answers
4k views

Previous owner of my home wants to buy it back but the property's value is less than my loan… what to do?

I've owned my home for close to 5 years and it's value is currently around $100k below my loan amount (according to zillow). I hate living here, and I've wanted to sell it for a long time. Today, ...
18
votes
7answers
4k views

When do buyer real estate agents expect you to sign with them?

I am totally new to the home buying process. I looked online at some houses that I liked, and the realtors who I was put in contact with told me to come and take a look. After I got off the phone with ...
18
votes
3answers
1k views

What are the most important things to ask a real estate agent before hiring them?

I've been researching the best ways to search for a home, and questions have come up about real estate agents. Getting a good real estate agent could potentially save you thousands of dollars, but I'...
16
votes
8answers
14k views

Can I back out of a house purchase after the inspection if the offer stipulates “as is”?

I made an offer on a house in the state of Arkansas, and got a counter offer, and now I am about to accept it. However, there is one thing that bugs me: the counter offer requires me to buy the house ...
16
votes
9answers
1k views

Why can't house prices be out of tune with salaries

I have been arguing for years with my colleagues that having house prices go up 10% pr year and salaries only 3-4% means that we have less money, not more. They in turn say that its not a problem ...
16
votes
9answers
3k views

Why do banks finance shared construction as mortgages instead of financing it directly and selling the apartments in a building?

The numbers in this question are for a developing country, so rates may seem high, but I tried to make them look reasonably related to each other to illustrate this question. The question also assumes ...
16
votes
2answers
8k views

Typical discount for cash purchase on $1+ million homes?

I understand that it is common to get lower than the asking price when offering cash for home purchase, but I am unclear how much a discount I should look for. Also, I am wondering to what extent it ...
16
votes
4answers
1k views

On top of 20% down, are there any more rules of thumb for money needed to buy a house?

I know that 20% down on a house is a good rule to put as a down payment on a house. What I don't know, however, is how much more is typically a good idea to have beyond that. Since this will factor ...
15
votes
5answers
5k views

What does “Home Equity” do for me?

My wife and I are considering buying a home soon - some of the major reasons are personal, such as being able to perform repairs and updates to the property, and having the security and peace of mind ...
15
votes
4answers
124k views

When can you use existing real estate as collateral to buy more?

My grandfather owned a dozen apartment buildings, and when I asked him when I was little how he got so many, he said he just bought one, and then used it for collateral to get the second, and so on. ...
15
votes
4answers
3k views

What are the practical implications of buying a house in a high Earthquake risk area?

I am purchasing a house in Indio California, that is described as being in an high risk Earthquake area. That sounds scary but the actual stats for the area are less so: Nearest Earthquake: 2.9 ...
15
votes
1answer
379 views

At what point did my former primary residence become an income property?

Last year we bought another house (and moved into it as our primary residence). Rather than sell our previous house, we opted to keep it and rent it out. Since the tax treatment for rentals is ...
14
votes
6answers
3k views

Should I max or min my affordability on a new home?

Situation: Around 1,000 month disposable between 2 of us. Current mortage outstanding balance is 95k on a 120k property, saving almost entirety of disposable income. Now the situation has arisen ...
14
votes
3answers
3k views

Do I owe a finders fee to my tenant's broker if they didn't bring me the referral?

I am currently using a broker to help me find new tenants for my rental home. Currently, she has only advertised the home on Craig's list. However, at an open house that she was hosting for another ...
14
votes
5answers
2k views

Should I put more money down on one property and pay it off sooner or hold on to the cash?

I've a huge chunk of money saved up for a down payment on a property that I'd eventually like to pay off and use as a rental. The assumption is that the property value will go up substantially over ...
14
votes
7answers
3k views

Is there any instance where less leverage will get you a better return on a rental property?

The larger a mortgage I have on a property the less money I have to put up front so my initial cash flow is worse but my cap rate and overall return is better. However the larger my down payment the ...
14
votes
2answers
1k views

Are REITs more correlated with the stock market or the real estate market?

Suppose a person has a sizable portion of his networth in stocks. He wants to diversify his wealth into the real estate asset class. For the sake of correct diversification, it will be nice to know ...
14
votes
3answers
879 views

My landlord is being foreclosed on. Should I confront him?

I just found out that my landlord is being foreclosed on. My lease agreement runs out at the end of this month, but I had, through email, agreed to stay for another year (no new contract was signed). ...
13
votes
7answers
6k views

Is it possible to offset a mortgage with only the appreciation of that property's value?

As in, is there a possible scenario where the appreciation of the value of a property could be greater than the mortgage payments on that property?
13
votes
5answers
4k views

When buying a house in California, can you amend the contract after signing it?

I live in the UK, but am trying to purchase a property in Indio California. My realtor says that I need to submit a contract for the property with my offer price ASAP as there is another buyer ...
13
votes
6answers
4k views

Buying a home with down payment from family as a “loan”

First time here, so please be gentle! I am thinking of buying a home, and have enough steady income to comfortably afford the monthly payment on the loan. However, I will need help with the down ...
13
votes
5answers
2k views

Rent or own, given these circumstances

Option A: $3600 (RENT) for a 3/2.5 condo. Option B: $629,000 (BUY) for a 3/1.75 house. This is in the Los Angeles area. Looking to live in this area for at least a year, maybe more. The house ...
13
votes
3answers
577 views

Pension or Property: Should I invest in more properties, or in a pension?

I do not have a pension but have a rental property (which breaks even). Question is, do I invest in more properties or take out a pension ? I am worried if I go down the pension route I would lose ...
13
votes
1answer
6k views

Can I get a mortgage if I'm employed by my own company, rather than self employed?

My partner and I are looking to buy a house as soon as possible (i.e., the second we have the deposit in the next 3-4 months). My partner is currently in full time work but we want to focus on our own ...
13
votes
2answers
534 views

How do you subdivide land to sell parcels to your neighbors?

I am considering buying an investment property that has a small house and an acre of land attached. The shape of the parcel is very long and narrow, so the land isn't terribly useful except for ...
12
votes
6answers
4k views

Should I invest in my house, when it's in my wife's name?

I loaned my wife about £50k in order to do work on the property she owns. I did this with a documented loan agreement, and she was not my wife at the time. Now we are married, I moved in, and sold ...
12
votes
3answers
26k views

If I sell my house, will I have to pay taxes on the profit?

I am in the United States, in Colorado. I purchased a house in July of 2013. It was in poor condition, so I spent the first two months repairing things before moving in. Now, 11 months after moving ...
12
votes
5answers
2k views

How do you value your home when calculating your net worth?

I'm interested in tracking my net worth as a way of measuring progress and I'd like to include home equity in my net worth. How are you tracking home equity? Are you using purchase price? Average ...
12
votes
4answers
2k views

How can one hedge against property price change when buying a home?

Let's say I want to buy a home, with intent to sell it down the road ( < 10 years). If I want to minimize my exposure to market fluctuation, what would be the best way to accomplish that? I ...
12
votes
3answers
805 views

How can I minimize losses on an upside down mortgage for a condo I no longer live in?

I have made a good faith effort to keep up my mortgage payments on a condo that I no longer live in since Oct 2005. In 2005 I had to move out of state for my job and I listed the property for about ...
12
votes
1answer
2k views

What should I be concerned with in buying a house for less than the market value? [duplicate]

I've grown up in my grandparents house my entire life. They lived two miles away my entire life. Sleep overs, dinners, barbecues, etc. It's been the plan since I was a kid to buy the house when I got ...
12
votes
3answers
2k views

How do people trade up from one house to another?

Newbie question here folks. My wife and I currently own our first (20% down on a condo in San Francisco in 2009; fixed 30-year loan). Obviously at some point (maybe 2-4 years from now) we would like ...
12
votes
1answer
716 views

I want to list my home for 2.5 million with a flat fee broker. Do I still have to pay buyers agent 3% commission?

I am located on Seattle's East Side where the real estate market is hot and inventory low, so I doubt I'm going to have a difficult time selling my home. 99% of buyers first search online to find the ...
12
votes
2answers
5k views

What are the risks in changing jobs during closing on a house?

I am working for CompanyX and my closing date on the house is on 18th August. I just now got a job offer from CompanyY and I have accepted it. My start date is August 29th. I dont want to jeopardize ...
12
votes
2answers
1k views

Are Shiller real-estate futures and options catching on with investors?

Robert Shiller introduced an approach for reducing exposure to macro risks using real-estate derivatives. He created a successful housing price index with help from Karl Case, the S&P Case-Shiller ...
11
votes
9answers
1k views

Does it make sense to buy a house in my situation?

I've been in a pretty crappy financial situation. I've described my situation in detail in the past and I am greatful for all the great advice I have received here. Since asking that question 8 ...
11
votes
3answers
5k views

Do I have to pay rent to my father when the home is owned by a family LLC I partially own? [closed]

I am inquiring about an LLC-owned property that I am renting. I, along with my three brothers, are owners of the LLC. My parents bought the house originally but then the LLC bought the property and ...
11
votes
5answers
2k views

What is the best way to stay risk neutral when buying a house with a mortgage?

I'm looking to buy a property. I do not want to take a risk on this property. Its sole purpose is to provide me with a place to live. How would I go about hedging against increasing interest rates, to ...
11
votes
4answers
4k views

Rental Property: What is considered decent cash flow? (with example)

I'm looking into buying my first rental property in Syracuse, NY. I'm looking at this one: http://www.zillow.com/homedetails/317-Wellesley-Rd-Syracuse-NY-13207/31678383_zpid/ The current list price ...
11
votes
3answers
2k views

Invest in (say, index funds) vs spending all money on home?

We are looking to buy our first home, and are evaluating how much of our savings to put towards the down payment of the property (or how much home to buy in general). When one has a choice, are there ...
11
votes
4answers
614 views

Buying a house for a shorter term

I've lived under the impression that it is never wise to buy a house (as your home) unless you are planning to live there "at least five years" (or something like that). But is this necessarily ...
11
votes
2answers
3k views

Setting up general ledger/tax reporting for a Real Estate Rental LLC in GnuCash

I have downloaded the GnuCash accounting software for use with our real-estate rental LLC, in hopes of following more universal accounting practices and determining our individual cash basis, but my ...
10
votes
7answers
4k views

Should one save up to purchase a house/condo or maximize their 401(k) first?

On the one hand, it seems like 401k with employee matching is one of the best investments you could possibly make. On the other hand, paying rent to a landlord is an ongoing loss compared to living in ...
10
votes
4answers
2k views

Owning REIT vs owning real estate - which has a better hypothetical ROI?

Let's say I want to invest in the real estate market because I am bullish on it. Consider two options: invest in REITs or actually purchase real estate. My question is which option has a better ...