Any home buyer understands the generic “before you buy” to-do list: Check out the schools. Knock on your future neighbors’ doors. Get an inspection. Stop by at night.
But in order to truly do your due diligence, you have to get even more proactive—and sometimes just a bit nosy. We know your pile of home-buying homework is huge, and you don’t want to add more to your to-do list. But the payoff of all this extra sniffing around can be truly substantial.Trust us on this one, OK? Here are nine things that home buyers often forget to check that can cause massive headaches—and costly expenses—down the line.
If home ownership is the first cornerstone of the American Dream, then a quiet cabin by the lake (if not a beach house with a view of a breathtaking sunset) in the mountains as far away from a Wi-Fi hot spot as possible probably runs a close second. Indeed, overly-wired and Internet-saturated Americans are looking to the peace and quiet of a cabin again. Zach Klein, the co-founder of Vimeo and the current chief executive at DIY.org, an online school for kids, recently wrote a best-selling book on the thousands of Americans who have gone to the backwoods to build their own.
Of course, you don’t have to saw your own logs to get the log-cabin effect. Heather Barbosa, a 45-year-old architectural project manager in Fullerton, Calif., bought a two-bedroom cabin in Big Bear, Calif., near the popular ski resort in 2003 with some money her grandmother left her. She uses it four times a year, but rents it out for 8 to 10 weekends a year as well. “It’s really a staple of our family now and a cheap vacation for us, ” she said. “Now that we’ve paid it off it becomes positive cash flow for us too.”
So if you’re looking to the mountains for some solitude, here are five things to consider.
When high net worth individuals sell real estate, they often go the off-market route to maintain their privacy. But buyers seeking that same anonymity have to jump through more hoops—and spend extra time and money while doing it—to keep details about themselves and their property decisions out of the public eye, experts say.
Some buyers want to keep their identity private so it doesn’t impact price negotiations for a new property, while others want to ensure a massive purchase doesn’t negatively impact their larger business presence. But most just want to maintain their safety and security, said Jonathan Nash, a Los Angeles-based agent at Hilton & Hyland.