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Thursday, 23 January 2014 16:32

A Dream without a plan is a just a Dream

Every New Year is greeted with a lot of excitement, optimism, a lot of expectation, and quite a number of resolutions. While all this enthusiasm is important, the lack of a dream and proper planning will turn this year into just another year.

If 2014 was and is the year you decided you were going to invest in property, your biggest motivation should be the DREAM. If you ever dreamt of acquiring or investing in property, then you have already made the first step.

However, dreams without concrete plans remain just that, dreams. Dreams don't just stumble into reality, they don't bump into reality the way you would with a friend. It takes an active, deliberate, intentional, and conscious thought process to achieve your dream in property investment no matter the magnitude of investment. You need to make a clear path as to what you are after and write it down. Elaborate on it in great detail and with clarity.

Planning to invest in property can be equated to planning to start a business. The common denominator between the two is that both of them require planning, not just planning, but proper planning.

Planning helps you to;
• Assess where you are now
• Show where you want to be in future
• Determine how you will get there

Your plan to own property should have;
• Specific goals
• Specific strategies
• Specific deadlines

Achieving a dream in property investment demands that we;

1. Clarify that dream
This means being very clear on what you want and writing it down. Do not be ambiguous and avoid being general

2. Spend time researching your dream

Become an expert on what it will take to achieve your dream.

3. Layout a strategic plan

The idea of having a strategic and realistic plan is to progress towards the dream each and every day, week, month or year

4. Make a realistic timeline

The property market has a mind of its own, and operates on its own clock, find out how much time it takes to do certain things and lay your plans within that time frame. Keep in mind that the greatest property investments had a long term plan

5. You need people

It takes experts to realize dreams. No man is an island; you cannot make it by yourself. Always be prepared to work with a number of experts to bring your dream to life and colour. Below are some of these key people

Qualified and registered real estate agents
When you need to buy, sell, rent or have your property managed a qualified and reliable real estate agent with knowledge and contacts in the property market will ease your experience. Estate agents are privileged in interacting with all the parties that make up the property market

A real estate lawyer
You need to invest in a good, honest lawyer, with integrity as a brand to help you navigate your way around the maze that is property investment

Reputable Land Surveyor
You will require a reputable land survey when investing in land to help establish boundaries

Project Manager
When selling your property, you will need a project manager to create the project plan and see it through to the end, to make improvements to the concept, to do market research, and to do a feasible analysis of the property market

Architects
At times used as the lead consultants and very helpful in putting the design down on paper and bringing it to reality.

Quantity Surveyor
Enables the prospective home owner to calculate the cost of constructing a building for planning and budget purposes

Mechanical and Electrical
You don't just want to build a house, you want a building that will stand literally, and also stand out as a living legacy and to stand the test of time

So, in 2014, layout the plans to accomplish your dream, experience it in your mind, and enjoy the process of nurturing it into a reality.

Published in Real Estate
Wednesday, 20 November 2013 00:00

Tips for Buying or Building a Valuable Property

Do you know how to value a house? A potential buyer may only notice whether or not there are granite countertops, an open floor plan or a well-groomed lawn when deciding whether to buy and what to pay for a home.

To get top value, it helps to know what could hurt your home's value, whether you're looking to sell now or later. Some factors are out of your control, while others have simple solutions.

Keep in mind, though, that every market, neighborhood and home is different, so the actual impact on each home's value can vary considerably.

1. Location

What are the three most important factors in determining a home's value? You guessed it: location, location and location.

If you build (an expensive) home in a location where it will be unique for the area, there is a good chance that the value will be much less than if you build that same home in an area where it is more typical.

Although you may have bought a piece of land and likely considered location when you bought, something may have changed since then: rezoning, an increase in crime or a nearby growing slum.

Unless you plan to uproot your plot and move it elsewhere, there's not much you can do about your home's location. So what can you do? Well, that depends on what about your location is bringing down the value. If you have a view of the city slum, for instance, you can plant some privacy hedges to make it less of an issue. Play up your home's strengths; make sure every interior and exterior detail is perfect.

2. Floor Plan

Appraisers classify that as a functional problem and determine value based on the market. A bad floor plan can reduce an appraised value by much compared with similarly sized homes. A good floor plan should complement the structure. Pay particular attention to roof lines, trim details and window sizes and styles.

3. Quality counts

Potential homebuyers have more sophisticated tastes than ever. That's why spending a little extra on good design, quality materials and careful craftsmanship can garner big rewards when it comes time to sell.

4. Meet expectations

What buyers want varies from area to area and from one price range to the next. Do some comparison shopping to see what your competition will be like should you decide to sell. And talk to a real-estate agent who knows your neighborhood.

5. Major systems and structures

A buyer wants to be able to walk in and say, 'I could move right in' major system and structure issues kill potential deals in high-end neighborhoods. Have an inspection done and fix the major things.

A roof that needs to be replaced could knock 15% off the value, a plumbing of the showers and water pipes could plant doubts of the anticipated sale price, and an electrical-system problem could knock off more on the value of your home.

6. Swimming pool

Depending on your market, a swimming pool or other water feature may boost or lower your home's value — and its appeal.
If you live in a hot climate where many homes have a pool, it's definitely an expected feature that will add value.

In regions where pools aren't common, though, buyers may not want the hassle of maintaining a pool they didn't want in the first place. Those buyers may not consider buying your home, particularly if they have young children and are concerned about safety.

7. Garage

A garage definitely adds value to a home, and the key is to have the right-size garage for the home and the neighborhood.
If I have a one-car garage in a 1,200-square-foot home in a starter neighborhood, there's a big premium for that, If you have a one-car garage in a fifty-million-shilling home, that's a functional problem.

8. Clotheslines

Modern homeowners don't like people's underwear in public. It's just unsightly. Placing clotheslines hidden from public view gives the home a neat look

These are but just a few tips to consider before spending hard earned money to develop your home or houses for sale, remember you don't want someone learning on your project.

Published in Real Estate

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