When Las Vegas Homeowners Consider Buying a Second Home

On January 16, 2015, in Gay Las Vegas, by Gay Real Estate Agent in Las Vegas

When Las Vegas Homeowners Consider Buying a Second Home People approach the whole idea of owning a second home from a hundred different perspectives simply because a second home can answer so many different purposes. If you are a Las Vegas homeowner at the stage in life where making retirement plans is becoming a more […]

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When Las Vegas Homeowners Consider Buying a Second Home

People approach the whole idea of owning a second home from a hundred different perspectives simply because a second home can answer so many different purposes. If you are a Las Vegas homeowner at the stage in life where making retirement plans is becoming a more immediate imperative, you might want to buy a second home as a vacation destination—but one which is also a tryout for your family’s future center of operations. Those who have spent a good part of their lives in cities sometimes seek a second home in the mountains or at the shore as a restorative refuge. People living in less crowded environs might crave a pied-à-terre for proximity to a city’s cultural riches. There really can be a hundred different reasons (and that’s not even counting all the financial ones)!

Once you begin to seriously entertain the notion, it becomes evident that deciding on which of many possible directions to pursue will involve weighing the tradeoffs each presents. In addition to an opening a conversation with the Las Vegas real estate professional whose advice you’ve come to trust the most, some of the main points you will want to consider—

  • If the second home is going to serve even temporarily as a weekend getaway spot, then buying within reasonable driving distance may be more important than you might assume. Keep in mind that the drive (or flight) will grow steadily less interesting as time passes.
  • In most instances, a second home will be occupied by members of your family only on a part-time basis. This brings up a number of issues—among them, insurance. Vacant properties present a different profile to insurers than do homes that are occupied most of the time. Hazard insurance tariffs could also differ from what you are used to (especially in flood-prone areas). Investigating insurance coverage and costs early on in your search will help you to avoid surprises.
  • You should consult your tax expert for details, but as a general rule, if the home is not rented out as a business proposition, you’ll likely find that you are able to deduct mortgage interest and property taxes on your Federal tax return. Then again, if you are thinking of renting the house out for more than 14 days per year, rental income is taxable. In that case, though, you’ll be able to use deductions for expenses, such as insurance, maintenance, professional fees, and sometimes even depreciation. Each situation will be different—again, your tax professional will have the relevant answers.
  • Financing a second home is similar to financing your main residence. You are likely to need a down payment of 10% to as much as 30% in some cases. If you will be drawing on the equity in your current home, it’s only prudent to be able to retain a reasonable amount of reserves for unforeseen emergencies.

Many people buy a second home in anticipation of retirement. If that is the case, think of factoring in the availability of quality medical and support services in your search areas. A remote cabin in the woods may seem appealing now, but as a retirement venue, maybe not so much!

Thinking about the long range is never more important than when you are entertaining the purchase of a second home. I’m here to help clarify those issues, as with all your other Las Vegas real estate need.

For more information, please contact Felipe Crook at 1-866-589-1646. You can also start your Las Vegas Home Search HERE!

Felipe Crook
Realty One Group
8395 W. Sunset Rd Ste 190
Las Vegas, NV 89113
1-866-589-1646

Las Vegas Home Sales Needn’t be Stalled until Springtime

On January 13, 2015, in Gay Las Vegas, by Gay Real Estate Agent in Las Vegas

Las Vegas Home Sales Needn’t be Stalled until Springtime Past history tells us that home sales in Las Vegas perk up come springtime, just as the advent of colder weather brings a slowdown in Las Vegas home sales. But what if your own family and professional situations dictate that now is the time to list […]

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Las Vegas Home Sales Needn’t be Stalled until Springtime

Past history tells us that home sales in Las Vegas perk up come springtime, just as the advent of colder weather brings a slowdown in Las Vegas home sales. But what if your own family and professional situations dictate that now is the time to list your own Las Vegas home? What if the weather curve balls Mother Nature has been serving up have to take a back seat to your own scheduling imperatives? Fortunately, the seasonal home sales ups and downs needn’t deter those plans. The fact is, several advantages can be had when a motivated seller and determined Realtor® put their minds to it. It’s largely a matter of attitude:

1. Make Your Home Feel like an Escape from Winter

Instead of allowing the cold weather to burden your whole endeavor, try to bring a little home sales jujitsu into play. The classic Japanese defense tactic relies on using the strength and weight of an adversary to disable him. In the same way, you can turn inclement conditions to your advantage by recognizing that they can help your home stand out as a beckoning refuge. Think: the nastier the weather, the better! As soon as potential buyers walk in, do everything you can to help them feel the sense of comfort a substantial shelter like this provides. The object is for them to recognize that here is the kind of home they want to wake up to on cold mornings! Warmth is the starting point, so keep the temperature cozy (this is no time to fuss about the heating bill). If you have a fireplace, be sure it’s lit when visitors arrive. Fluffy comforters in the bedrooms and throw rugs that break up large areas of bare flooring will add, too. Further the effect with cups of warm cocoa, apple cider, tea or coffee that will warm buyers from the inside.

2. Clear All Walkways

It’s relatively easy to control the interior of your house by turning up the heat. Outside, though, you’re at the mercy of Mother Nature. Clear pathways, and pay special attention to any surfaces that might become slippery when the weather conspires against you. It’s especially important to clear the driveway, stone paths, sidewalks, and anywhere else buyers may want to inspect or visit. A clear path can be the difference between getting an offer…and getting sued!

3. Use the Slump to Your Advantage

Scads of homeowners buy the myth that Las Vegas home sales are next to impossible to accomplish during wintertime. That’s why many—even some whose homes have been listed since autumn—fail to energetically market their homes until the weather clears (sometimes even failing to respond to home tour requests). That gives you a competitive advantage—and another jujitsu opening. Since prospects doing a Las Vegas house tour will be less hurried than usual, your Realtor should be ready to spend more time with them to share persuasive points that make your property the standout value they’ve been after!

Sure, home sales during the shiver-producing months presents particular challenges, but the hidden advantages can be decisive. If you have been ready to sell, but hesitating until kinder weather surfaces, do give me a call!

For more information, please contact Felipe Crook at 1-866-589-1646. You can also start your Las Vegas Home Search HERE!

Felipe Crook
Realty One Group
8395 W. Sunset Rd Ste 190
Las Vegas, NV 89113
1-866-589-1646

Forecasting the Future for Las Vegas Housing in the New Year

On January 12, 2015, in Gay Las Vegas, by Gay Real Estate Agent in Las Vegas

Forecasting the Future for Las Vegas Housing in the New Year It does seem to be time for an in depth forecast about Las Vegas’s housing outlook for 2015. The prediction game is going strong everywhere else this week, with print and online journalists and TV talking heads interviewing experts and each other about what […]

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Forecasting the Future for Las Vegas Housing in the New Year

It does seem to be time for an in depth forecast about Las Vegas’s housing outlook for 2015. The prediction game is going strong everywhere else this week, with print and online journalists and TV talking heads interviewing experts and each other about what to expect in the coming year. Some make noteworthy predictions—but more seem to be doing their best to sound authoritative while remaining vague enough to avoid provably wrong calls.

I have to sympathize. Last year, after delving into the Las Vegas housing outlook to come up with predictions, the one I put at the top of my list was a forecast that mortgage interest rates would soon be climbing. That was safe—rates had been so low for so long, history told us they had to rise, didn’t it? Besides, all the experts agreed.

What then happened in 2014 explains why financial prospectuses tend to footnote projections with sentences like “past performance is no guarantee of future results.” Rates did rise; but then sank again. So this year, it’s probably a better idea to shelve the crystal ball in favor of laying out some of the factors we do and don’t know—factors that should influence the direction of Las Vegas housing trends for the coming year.

First, what we do know for sure. Since Baby Boomers make up the largest demographic in the country…

Uh-oh! No they don’t. The Census Bureau now says that the cohort of 23-year-old Americans has just become the largest in the country. Followed by 24- and 22-year olds, respectively. Probably why the chief economist at the NAR® projects that this generation will “drive two-thirds of household formations over the next five years.” He says 2015 will become the point at which the millennial generation’s presence in the housing market will be truly felt for the first time. So what we do know is that younger buyers have begun to join the ranks of homeowners in substantial numbers. That’s different; it has the look of a major trend.

And mortgage rates will rise (because they have to, right?) Again, this one only seems to be a reliable projection. At this point, a 30-year mortgage is actually lower than it was a year ago. It is thought that foreign influences (uncertainty in Europe; economic weakness in the Far East) are what have held down U.S. housing financing rates. If that’s true—and since no one can say with any certainty what to expect from events overseas—mortgage rates and their influence on Las Vegas housing activity should more accurately be placed in the don’t know column.

So will Las Vegas housing prices and sales activity rise in the coming year? We do know that the public opinion polling data supports that likelihood. Consumer confidence is building, possibly because of a brightening employment picture (not to mention last week’s record-breaking Santa Claus rally and other strong economic news). In fact, real estate mega site Trulia reports that their samples tell them “consumers expect 2015 to be better, especially for selling a home.”

Economists agree. Fortune.com says that economists are “nearly unanimous in predicting that home values would continue to rise” and that “surveys of homeowner sentiment suggest that more of them will look to sell their homes” in the coming year.

If you are leaning in that direction yourself, there’s one factor we know for sure: I’ll be standing by in 2015, ready to put all of my resources and experience to work for your Las Vegas home sale!

For more information, please contact Felipe Crook at 1-866-589-1646. You can also start your Las Vegas Home Search HERE!

Felipe Crook
Realty One Group
8395 W. Sunset Rd Ste 190
Las Vegas, NV 89113
1-866-589-1646

Year-End Review Shows Institutions Exiting Investment Picture

On January 10, 2015, in Gay Las Vegas, by Gay Real Estate Agent in Las Vegas

Year-End Review Shows Institutions Exiting Investment Picture At 2014’s year end, it’s as good a time as ever to look back over the real estate investment landscape to see if any new trends or directions may have become apparent. It does look as if one development in the country as a whole may cause ripples […]

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Year-End Review Shows Institutions Exiting Investment Picture

At 2014’s year end, it’s as good a time as ever to look back over the real estate investment landscape to see if any new trends or directions may have become apparent. It does look as if one development in the country as a whole may cause ripples that could affect Las Vegas real estate investment hunters in the coming year.

This is a development with roots that go back to the 2008 upending of the housing market. That triggered a glut of foreclosures, so that banks, already up to their vaults in turmoil, found themselves holding uncomfortably large numbers of repossessions. Bright-eyed executives at private equity firms and hedge funds were quick to spot this as a new opportunity: they could scoop up the repossessions for a song, rent them out, and then just wait to sell until the economy improved.

By 2013 The New York Times was reporting that the Blackstone Group now owned some 26,000 rental homes—with Colony Capital picking up more than 10,000 single-family residences. Warren Buffet had endorsed the idea; J.P. Morgan and Morgan Stanley had set up new real estate investment funds earmarked for the purchase of houses. Vague concerns about absentee investor landlords were waved away—this was like some kind of newfangled Institutional Investor Gold Rush, and as any ‘49er could have told you, in a gold rush, there isn’t time to worry about the details!

The main real estate investment targets centered on certain markets: Minneapolis, Atlanta, Detroit, Los Angeles, Las Vegas, New York, and Phoenix saw the most activity. In some regions, 2012 and 2013 saw bidding wars for repossessions and lower-priced housing, until by July of this year, The Times could report that in some areas “prices of the least expensive homes have more than doubled” in two years. As Forbes reported in 2013, “Wall Street has been bullish on real estate.”

Sellers (mostly banks) were happy. The institutional investors were happy. However, ordinary people looking out for the same kind of real estate investments found themselves competing with institutions. They were largely beaten out or priced out of the market.

By the end of 2013, though, those earlier “details” that had been ignored were beginning to rankle. Individuals whose real estate investments were hands-on propositions may not have had the same kind of problems, but a company like Colony American Capital had to report that it had found renters for only 51% of its properties. Many private equity firms and hedge funds began to report losses. As the CEO of Carrington Holding wrote, “We just don’t see the returns there that are adequate to incentivize us to continue to invest.” (Translation: Good-bye.)

With institutional investors bidding adieu to the areas they’d previously targeted, any repercussions felt Las Vegas ’s real estate investment landscape can only be to return to a more familiar market scenario—one where individual investors have the last word.

If 2015 will see you in the hunt for suitable real estate investments in Las Vegas , that should come as good news…as well as a good reason to give me a call!

For more information, please contact Felipe Crook at 1-866-589-1646. You can also start your Las Vegas Home Search HERE!

Felipe Crook
Realty One Group
8395 W. Sunset Rd Ste 190
Las Vegas, NV 89113
1-866-589-1646

Selecting Good Las Vegas Tenants While Heeding Housing Rules

On January 8, 2015, in Gay Las Vegas, by Gay Real Estate Agent in Las Vegas

Selecting Good Las Vegas Tenants While Heeding Housing Rules Every landlord has had the feeling at one time or another that a prospective Las Vegas tenant may not be a good choice. Call it a hunch, or intuition—but something tells you that this tenant may be trouble down the road. There is more than enough […]

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Selecting Good Las Vegas Tenants While Heeding Housing Rules

Every landlord has had the feeling at one time or another that a prospective Las Vegas tenant may not be a good choice. Call it a hunch, or intuition—but something tells you that this tenant may be trouble down the road. There is more than enough riding on the decision to make you want to pay attention to your instincts, but that’s where being aware of the dos and don’ts of tenant management comes into play. You need to protect your business and property, but in so doing, you also need to heed outside factors.

Chief among those factors is the housing laws and regulations. This is a realm where there’s no shortage of fine print—and since I don’t offer legal advice, we needn’t wade into the technical weeds. But there are some common sense concepts that should shed light on the subject.

One of the key things to remember is that it is frowned upon to arbitrarily accept or reject tenants based on personal preferences or whims. Of course, a landlord does own the property whose use the tenant is asking to borrow, but nevertheless, most people understand why anti-discrimination laws have been created. Some feel they go too far—some, that they don’t go far enough—but at any rate, one fact is indisputable: ignoring the rules can have bad consequences.

One easy-to-follow idea is to prepare your own written standards for accepting prospective Las Vegas tenants (standards that are certain to not contravene discrimination guidelines). Another that is universally considered good practice is to require every applicant to fill out an application form with the kind of information that state and federal guidelines allow. When everyone is required to complete an application in full, failing to do so becomes grounds for rejection. The kinds of information should be relevant to the landlord’s business needs; and the standards may be high or low, as long as they are evaluated evenly for every applicant. Some common criteria:

  • Prospective tenants should never have been evicted from a property.
  • Prospective tenants should have a credit score above a certain level
  • They should have no record of any judgments having been levied against them for failure to pay utilities.
  • They should have proof of employment and enough income to reliably pay rent (the national average income level is 3 times rent).
  • Prospective tenants should supply references from previous landlords—references that can be verified over the phone.

Of course, none of this means a landlord is required to rent to just anyone who comes by. The key is to define the ideal tenant, make sure that ideal isn’t based on random discriminatory criteria (like race or sex or religion)—and then to adhere to a consistent evaluation process. And the fact is, the potential financial rewards should more than compensate for heeding the basic ground rules.

If you will be taking a look at the inviting opportunities that Las Vegas income properties currently offer, I’d like to show you some of the best ones. Give me a call!

For more information, please contact Felipe Crook at 1-866-589-1646. You can also start your Las Vegas Home Search HERE!

Felipe Crook
Realty One Group
8395 W. Sunset Rd Ste 190
Las Vegas, NV 89113
1-866-589-1646

Las Vegas Foreclosure Watchers Note Last Month’s Trend Change

On January 7, 2015, in Gay Las Vegas, by Gay Real Estate Agent in Las Vegas

Las Vegas Foreclosure Watchers Note Last Month’s Trend Change Las Vegas foreclosure watchers keep their eyes trained on the local market filings, but also stay aware of the national trends as a signal of what might be coming down the pike. Across the U.S., by the end of November there were nearly 112,500 foreclosure filings, […]

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Las Vegas Foreclosure Watchers Note Last Month’s Trend Change

Las Vegas foreclosure watchers keep their eyes trained on the local market filings, but also stay aware of the national trends as a signal of what might be coming down the pike. Across the U.S., by the end of November there were nearly 112,500 foreclosure filings, which amounts to one out of every 1,170 homes.

The company that keeps an eye on such things, real-estate data source RealtyTrac, just offered a bar chart showing historical trends, which highlighted something that would be lost in the raw numbers alone. It showed about 27 (it looked like 27; the bars were tiny) little bars hanging underneath the “0% foreclosure start” line, meaning months in which foreclosure starts had declined compared with the same month a year earlier. Twenty-seven months is more than two straight years of fewer foreclosure starts (including default notice filings, scheduled auctions and bank repossessions). But the standout was one little line that stood bravely alone above the line—and it was for this November!

That doesn’t mean Las Vegas foreclosure rates are now destined to explode, but it is the first reversal RealtyTrac has registered in years. For potential home bargain-hunters, it might be a heads-up to keep their powder dry—and perhaps a reasonable idea to once more go over some of the basics that veteran Las Vegas foreclosure buyers generally agree upon:

Get pre-approved:

For anyone who wouldn’t be ready with cash in hand, when foreclosed homes are in the cross-hairs, it’s really imperative to have advance bank approval. When a good Las Vegas foreclosure value comes up, you need to be ready to act immediately. About 60% of foreclosed homes are financed—and pre-approval is the way to prevent a cash buyer from swooping in ahead of you.

Find a qualified real estate agent:

A competent agent—one experienced in dealing with Las Vegas foreclosures—does more than just put you ahead when it comes to the underlying values of homes in the area. Your agent can point out issues others may have overlooked with certain properties, help you navigate local procedures and red tape, aid with inspections, etc.

Focus on REO properties:

Las Vegas REO properties are foreclosed homes that have already gone through the foreclosure process completely, and are now owned by the lender. They are typically vacant, and are sometimes priced to sell since banks are incented to get them ‘off the books.’ It’s not universally the case, but REOs can be more straightforward to deal with than auctions, pending foreclosures, or short sales.

Check things out thoroughly:

Foreclosed homes often are in need of repair. Since lenders sell them “as is,” prudent buyers know to identify any major faults before making a buying decision. Good foreclosure inspectors will have a generator and other equipment available so they can test all of a property’s major systems.

Check for liens:

A foreclosed home can be burdened by pre-existing liens from utility companies, municipalities, and unpaid contractors. Knowing about them early helps estimate the total true value (and ensure they won’t cause your deal to fall apart).

Buying a Las Vegas foreclosed home can offer immediate value and equity to those who are prepared to make sophisticated inquiries. I offer my clients the kind of experienced teamwork that makes that happen!

For more information, please contact Felipe Crook at 1-866-589-1646. You can also start your Las Vegas Home Search HERE!

Felipe Crook
Realty One Group
8395 W. Sunset Rd Ste 190
Las Vegas, NV 89113
1-866-589-1646

Las Vegas Homes for Sale Use Staging to Set the Mood

On January 5, 2015, in Gay Las Vegas, by Gay Real Estate Agent in Las Vegas

Las Vegas Homes for Sale Use Staging to Set the Mood When you think about the importance of staging when a Las Vegas home goes on the market, you might relate it to how department stores go about increasing sales during the holidays. You have only to stroll through the front door of any of […]

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Las Vegas Homes for Sale Use Staging to Set the Mood

When you think about the importance of staging when a Las Vegas home goes on the market, you might relate it to how department stores go about increasing sales during the holidays. You have only to stroll through the front door of any of the legendary department stores this time of year to experience what I mean: the most successful ones fairly assault your senses with the color, glitter, sounds (sometimes even the scents!) of the season. If you’ve ever strolled down 5th Avenue in Manhattan any time after Thanksgiving, you’ll have experienced a major jaw-dropping tourist attraction. It seems like the whole place is staged—and masterfully, at that!

Why so many veteran merchants put that kind of effort (and budget) into holiday decorating is proof of how cost-effective staging is for merchandising. It’s not that different when a home is being prepared to be offered to the public. Effective staging for a Las Vegas property performs the same function that Macy’s and Neiman Marcus hope to achieve: to indirectly alter their visitor’s mood to one more receptive to the designer’s goal. Department store holiday décor is more than just eye-candy created to instill a jolly mood. By transporting us into the spirit of the season, it gently cues us into recreating how we feel at the moment of gift-giving (i.e., generous gift giving!). Sometimes that might take 50 or more fully-decorated Christmas trees—all for the sole purpose of creating an atmosphere that Scrooge himself couldn’t resist!

In the same way, staging a Las Vegas home effectively can put prospective buyers into in a receptive frame of mind. The goal is to create an instant impression that does two things.

First, it immediately establishes trust. By presenting a well-designed and smartly maintained environment, it acts to dispel one major element of buyer resistance—the fear of the unknown, which in the case of a Las Vegas home sale translates into lurking suspicions about the condition of “somebody else’s” house. Good staging envelops visitors in spaces that just feel substantial.

Second (just as important), staging a Las Vegas home effectively creates a welcoming feeling. If visitors feel comfortable—at ease enough that they can easily picture themselves at home there—they are much more likely to consider the next steps. Not every home can appeal to every prospective buyer, of course, but good staging does away with idiosyncratic artifacts that would narrow the field.

National studies show time and again that, staged correctly, homes are more likely to garner higher offers—and more quickly. Of course, staging is only one step in the process of listing and selling a home, and it isn’t even the first: that one is giving me a call!

For more information, please contact Felipe Crook at 1-866-589-1646. You can also start your Las Vegas Home Search HERE!

Felipe Crook
Realty One Group
8395 W. Sunset Rd Ste 190
Las Vegas, NV 89113
1-866-589-1646

Las Vegas Home Sales during the Holidays Happen for a Reason

On January 4, 2015, in Gay Las Vegas, by Gay Real Estate Agent in Las Vegas

Las Vegas Home Sales during the Holidays Happen for a Reason Okay, granted: a new family home won’t fit under the tree… This year, Las Vegas TVs have been filled with commercials that mix Santa with new automobiles. If you believe the ads, a number of automakers apparently offer models that will fly like reindeer […]

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Las Vegas Home Sales during the Holidays Happen for a Reason

Okay, granted: a new family home won’t fit under the tree…

This year, Las Vegas TVs have been filled with commercials that mix Santa with new automobiles. If you believe the ads, a number of automakers apparently offer models that will fly like reindeer onto driveways for big boys and girls who are sufficiently nice. One do-gooder is portrayed stitching up Santa’s ripped tunic in an act of selfless un-naughtiness that earns him a new sedan on the big day.

I’m pleased to say we haven’t seen a National Association of Realtors® commercial with Santa and elves flying a new home onto a surprised family’s driveway, but the idea is no more divorced from reality than Santa’s barnful of vintage Mercedes (it looks like he loves the red gullwing best). If you’ve never thought about shopping for a home during the year-end holiday season, you might be surprised to consider that in some cases this is a very fortuitous time of year for home sales. Aside from the few who can actually give such a fantastic gift (it actually happens!), there are a couple of other reasons why holiday Las Vegas home sales do take place:

Lower Prices

First of all, nothing typifies the holiday spirit quite like the spirit of generosity—and at this time of year, there are some Las Vegas home sellers who are predisposed to be more generous than usual. The possibility of their accepting lower offers doesn’t necessarily owe to holiday altruism decking their halls. Fewer visits and fewer offers are made over the holidays, while at the same time there are a number of circumstances that could materially benefit sellers who can close out the Old and usher in the New before calendar year’s end. In some cases, as Forbes points out, home sales may be a matter of the seller wanting to complete the transaction before year’s end for tax purposes—or simply to get the sale out of the way.

Favorable Rates

When you buy in part determines how much you’ll pay, and the waning days of 2014 still offer historically low home loan interest rates. Whether home sales in Las Vegas during the coming year will long be able to boast the same advantage is a matter of conjecture, but certainly this is one year when beneficial rates are in place. Last-minute year-end shoppers may reap a happier holiday if they’ve locked in the kind of rates currently available.

Asking Santa for a new home may sound like a bit of an overreach, but for those who make this year’s holiday buying benefits work in their favor, it can be a most memorable season! And for the rest of us who will be leaving a chocolate chip cookie and milk by the fireplace…it couldn’t hurt, could it?

For more information, please contact Felipe Crook at 1-866-589-1646. You can also start your Las Vegas Home Search HERE!

Felipe Crook
Realty One Group
8395 W. Sunset Rd Ste 190
Las Vegas, NV 89113
1-866-589-1646

When (and When Not) to Tap Your Las Vegas Home Equity

On January 2, 2015, in Gay Las Vegas, by Gay Real Estate Agent in Las Vegas

When (and When Not) to Tap Your Las Vegas Home Equity Your Las Vegas home is your castle, sure—but it’s also a great deal more than that. In addition to being the place where you relax after work, spend time with family, and generally live your life, it’s also the most substantial investment most people […]

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When (and When Not) to Tap Your Las Vegas Home Equity

Your Las Vegas home is your castle, sure—but it’s also a great deal more than that. In addition to being the place where you relax after work, spend time with family, and generally live your life, it’s also the most substantial investment most people ever make. Much of its prominence is due to the many advantages homeownership brings in the personal financial realm.

In addition to the ongoing tax savings its mortgage provides, it’s the home equity—the difference between market value and the amount owed—that’s such a valuable contribution. A Las Vegas property’s equity adds considerable financial flexibility in the form of easily obtainable home equity loans.

That’s how your Las Vegas home can be the enabler for financing key life events—important undertakings like college, home improvements, or major debt consolidation. It’s a mainstream activity, and one that’s growing in popularity. Credit reporting firm Equifax tells us that the number of home equity loans have increased by 16.1% over last year; home equity lines of credit, 21.4%.

But at the same time, it’s the ease with which home equity financing can be arranged that should be cause for caution. Before anyone takes advantage of this kind of financing, they should clearly consider what they are getting into, the better to decide when and when not to make use of it.

There are two forms of home equity credit—the home equity loan (HEL), and the home equity line of credit (HELOC). HELs are straightforward loans, created and retired when you take a one-time, lump-sum of cash, then pay it back, with interest, over time. HELOCs work more like credit card accounts. You are approved for a line of credit with a top limit, and you can spend as much as you want until you reach the limit. You may use it or not as you wish. In fact, with most HELOCs, you’re actually issued a credit card or checkbook to use as you see fit.

Deciding when home equity financing is appropriate is an individual decision, but a conventional rule of thumb is that it is usually best reserved for single events. One good use is for home improvements, since they actually add equity to the underlying collateral. Another is for debt consolidation when it has the effect of lowering monthly interest outlays.

When are Las Vegas home equity loans not a good idea? For one, if you don’t need a lot of money, since opening a HEL or HELOC might involve closing costs and other fees, make sure it makes financial sense. And always look to the future. Since failing to make timely payments can actually force the sale of your home, any time you are less than certain your cash flow will support repayment, better look for other forms of financing. Your Las Vegas home is a castle worth protecting; you want to be sure that you are the single voice to say if and when a move is in order.

And of course, whenever you are contemplating a major move, give me a call!

For more information, please contact Felipe Crook at 1-866-589-1646. You can also start your Las Vegas Home Search HERE!

Felipe Crook
Realty One Group
8395 W. Sunset Rd Ste 190
Las Vegas, NV 89113
1-866-589-1646

 

When a Real Estate Investment Beckons, the Question to Ask

On January 1, 2015, in Gay Las Vegas, by Gay Real Estate Agent in Las Vegas

When a Real Estate Investment Beckons, the Question to Ask It happens: an all-but-irresistible Las Vegas real estate investment crops up when you’re least expecting it. You may have been actively searching for your next family home when you happen across a particularly good bargain—but it’s not a good fit for your own family. “Holy […]

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When a Real Estate Investment Beckons, the Question to Ask

It happens: an all-but-irresistible Las Vegas real estate investment crops up when you’re least expecting it. You may have been actively searching for your next family home when you happen across a particularly good bargain—but it’s not a good fit for your own family. “Holy cow,” you think to yourself, “that’s a ridiculously great property at an absurdly low price!”

That can start the wheels turning. If you have the financial resources (or enough experience to know how to corral them), it can be the genesis of a lucrative real estate investment in Las Vegas. There is, however, one question to be asked before taking the idea to the next level.

It’s a question familiar to experienced investors in all walks of life. Whenever a phenomenal opportunity presents itself, it’s the first question that venture capitalists, stock market analysts, even small business entrepreneurs automatically pose. There are scores of ways this question might be worded, but they all boil down to pretty much the same kernel of an idea—which is to question the assumptions that make this new venture so seemingly irresistible. In short, at its core the question is simply, “What’s wrong with this picture?”

Applied to any real estate investment in Las Vegas, it’s a valuable opening question. Finding a great property at an unbelievable price—one that unmistakably flashes ‘profit!’ for either renting or reselling—does happen, of course. But it’s never wrong to take a step back for a reality check. Remember, there are alert competitive forces at play in the local market. Other real estate investors are constantly on the lookout for the next promising Las Vegas real estate investment opportunity.

You may well be among the first to notice a prime offering, but even so, you’ll be well served to look hard for a reason why it hasn’t already been snapped up. The fact is, there is a well-developed, reliable mechanism at play that should lead a seller to have a good idea of what his property is worth—and therefore, what to ask for it. The comparable property value numbers—the ‘comps’—make the market fairly well ‘regularized.’ They make greatly underpriced offerings rare.

Asking yourself what’s wrong here? is a shorthand way of reminding yourself to curb your enthusiasm as you exercise all the due diligence steps: verifying the condition of the property inside and out and spelling out title and lien issues and location, neighbor, neighborhood and historical matters. The curbed enthusiasm should last until those inquiries come up with the right answers…at which point, even the most jaded real estate investors tend to put the pedal to the metal. When everything begins to check out, they know a crowd will soon be forming!

It’s my job to help facilitate every phase of a good Las Vegas real estate investment—from discovery and investigation through offer, negotiation and all the documentation steps. It’s what happens when the answer to, “What’s wrong with this picture?” turns out to be, “Absolutely nothing!” If you’re looking to buy an investment property in Las Vegas this winter, call me today!

For more information, please contact Felipe Crook at 1-866-589-1646. You can also start your Las Vegas Home Search HERE!

Felipe Crook
Realty One Group
8395 W. Sunset Rd Ste 190
Las Vegas, NV 89113
1-866-589-1646