Thursday, November 22, 2007

First Time Homebuyers in Minnesota

If someone is buying a Minnesota home for the 1st time it can be truly gratifying. It can also be very, very scary. There’s a ton of info to comprehend in a fairly fast time period. There are new terms and numbers to understand and you will have dozens questions!

From a psychological standpoint, whenever you’re studying new material you only remember about 20 percent of the 1st exposure to it, and although you asked a question once, you might need to ask it repeatedly before the information makes sense. Any good Minnesota Realtors will understand this and use it to bring all the technical terminology to a simpler level so that it can be perceived by your brain. It is not even a bad idea that you to take notes as you speak with them so you can look back & remember what was said.

As a 1st time home buyer as well, you will have access to all the 1st time home buyer financing that people who already own don’t have! What’s so special about this? Because now you can buy anywhere from between $30,000 to $35,000 MORE of a Minneapolis home same mortgage payment as other buyers. These programs are available basically because the U.S. government wants people to own Minnesota homes. They believe that you are a more trustworthy and reliable person in order to buy, and manage your own house, so they’ve made these benefits available to encourage anyone that is “on the fence” about their first buying experience and to make it a bit easier!

As for the new buyers the first initial inquiry is usually “where do I start?”. There are those who begin searching the MN MLS listings or in the local paper looking at what’s for sale and that’s a great way to see what’s in your desired location, but now when can you visit them? Well, that’s where I come in. If you want to make appointments to see the inside of a Minneapolis home for sale, a Minnesota real estate agent must set up the arrangements for you, get the lock-box codes & open the houses up for you. They are is accountable for you while you’re in that house as well. Once you begin looking at homes as well, consider consulting someone at a bank or other lending institution as well, to make sure you are shopping in a price range that you can qualify for (as well as afford). Some people are surprised when they qualify for more or less than they assumed and were looking at the wrong housing for their range, wasting their own precious time.

Be aware as well, that many Minnesota Realtors in the industry will attempt to get you to sign a contract immediately that says you will work with them and only them. You do not need to sign that. They are just trying to make sure they “lock you in”, but you can always try different real estate agents and use whoever you prefer. Or even question them to see who you like the most & who is going to serve your needs! At the end of the day, your Realtor will not get paid until you buy a house using them and even that is paid of the seller’s fees, not the buyer’s!

Sunday, August 5, 2007

The First Hurdle of Minnesota Real Estate Investing

Reading Robert Kiyosaki's Rich Dad, Poor Dad book series on real estate investing is enough to make anybody chomp at the bit to get started. These books make it seem just that easy. Kiyosaki would be delighted, of course. That's what he and similar authors want—for their readers to feel as if they can do anything. That means they've given a very good pep talk.

And while they are right in a way—anyone CAN learn to invest in Minnesota real estate—there are some things that a novice real estate investor may not understand right off the bat. For one thing, what seems to work out smoothly in the black-and-white pages of a book has a few more hitches when you apply it to real life.

Kiyosaki's books teach his readers “just enough to be dangerous.” If they get out there and start the real estate investing game, they will be heading for the first hurdle of investing at an alarmingly fast rate. If it doesn't shake them too bad, then they might just have a chance at becoming a real investor. That first hurdle, the hurdle which can throw a novice right out of the saddle is this: Learning he's got a lot more learning to do.
See, Kiyosaki's books provide the reader with an overall framework. It's kind of like explaining to someone the technicalities of staying on a wild horse. It may sound easy in theory, but the first time that horse actually jumps with the novice on his back, that novice learns quickly that life and theory are two separate things.
However, if he can hold on tight, he's got a chance to ride that thing till it's tired.

Rich Dad adviser Ken McElroy, who authored the book “The ABCs of Investing,” sets forth a layered method of research, which gets the investor to carry out a broad search of the markets he might like to dip his toe into. In other words, he determines which area of the country, and then which city, in which he would like to look for properties. It is important, McElroy writes, to know which criteria to use in order to determine what makes a desirable market.

Criteria for choosing you city is all about the economy. Are big corporations moving in, or are businessmen closing up shop? Are people moving in by the truckloads or fleeing in droves? The smart investor puts his money where the people are and where they want to be.

After that, McElroy advises, visit the city. Before his visit, the smart investor makes sure he will have appointments with local Minnesota realty experts. While he meets with those experts, he will evaluate them for a possible place on his team. Putting together that team of experts is a step that should not be skipped at any cost, yet the novice often does skip this step. The experiences the novice may have as a result is often enough to put him off real estate investing forever, because skimping on your team can be very, very costly.

The first list of experts the investor speaks to in the city will introduce him to the next list, who will lead him to more, and so on. He will meet local business owners and government officials who will give him even more information on the city. Because he took the time to learn how to read financial documents, and learn the basics of real estate law, he will be able to ask intelligent question and to know when someone isn't being quite up front. He will know what documents to ask for in order to prove or disprove the grand statements that people are giving him.

If the novice real estate investor enjoys this investigative approach to things, and loves the fact that the work he does in the beginning gains him knowledge which prepares him for digging up even more knowledge and then more, then he will become a good investor.

Anyone planning to skimp on the work of Minnesota real estate investing is planning to fail.