The 10 A’s are certain factors to keep in mind to guide the potential buyers on what they should be looking for in acquiring property:
1. ACCESSIBILITY – is one of the most important factors for consideration. Money can improve your property in the future, but money can do very little to improve your location and accessibility to where you go from day to day. So check the location of public transportation terminals, how many rides, how long the travel time, the traffic condition, etc. Because you are trying to improve your lifestyle, the property that you are acquiring must be easily accessible to your work, your children’s schooling and your lifestyle, where you spend most of your time that defines your life. As Real Estate Broker for over 15 years, accessibility is what my clients are looking for in a property aside from the goodness of the property itself.
2. ADEQUACY – The property must be adequate for you which means sufficient in terms of rooms, lot area, floor area, utilities, amenities, car garage if you have a car or planning to buy one. Ideally should remain spacious even if you install all the appliances and furnishings you need as well as the cabinets and closets for all your belongings. Most often though adequacy might be in conflict with affordability, so you might compromise by accepting a less adequate space for the meantime but can be expanded in the future when you have the budget which brings us to the next A, which is…
3. ADAPTABILITY – The property must be adaptable to the growing needs of the family. It may be just small for now, but the structure must be solid enough to add more space like adding a second or third floor in the future, or upgrading the house to your future anticipated needs. Be aware that there are subdivision developments that do not allow changes in the structure of the house, so you need to check on the details as to how you will adapt to your future space needs. This brings us to the next A which is…
4. ACCEPTABILITY – The condition of the unit, the materials used, the style, the neighborhood, the quietness, the security, the deed of restrictions imposed on subdivisions or condominium corporations are acceptable to you. For example, some developers do not approve any changes in the frontage of the house while others do allow. There are those who allow vertical expansion such as second floor for bungalow unit or third floor for 2-storey unit but there are those who cannot allow this to happen. There are condominium projects that do not allow pets and you might not like the idea. It will be good to know the deeds of restrictions of any development before deciding to reserve a unit to ensure that you are acceptable to all conditions and restrictions of living in the place.
5. ADMIRABILITY – Usually this is the higher form of acceptability which is mostly applicable for high end properties. It could be the spectacular mountain or city view, the design of the house, the beachfront feature, etc. This may not be very necessary especially on low cost housing which acceptability may just be enough but it’s a great factor for consideration too because admirability means extreme feeling of likeness for something.
6. APPRECIABILITY – The property must easily appreciate over time. So, it must be durable enough to last a lifetime and that the style is so that it will not easily become obsolete. You will never know that you can be transferred to other areas as required by your work or business or your children have grown, etc. And so, the property must have a very good resale value such that when you sell it in the future, you make a good profit aside from using it for so long. To often, the lack of consideration for appreciability has been a big blunder for some home buyers or builders. They focus too much on what they want in a house, too often blinded by their desires only to fall victim of a real estate principle which is OVER IMPROVEMENT. Look at your neighborhood, if your house is the biggest and most expensive one, you might be a victim of over improvement. The effect is that, when the time comes you don’t need your property and you have to sell it, you cannot even sell it at cost. You need to sell it at big loss to make the sale happen. And so, in this case, real estate is not an investment for you. It’s a loss because you focus too much on what you want. The most practical is to enjoy the house at the same time you are confident that someone will buy it the moment you don’t need it and of course, for a profit.
7. AVAILABILITY – You may have so many wishes for features of your dream home, but if these are not available, it’s still useless. Waiting for them to become available may elude you with the investment that you could have started right away. Your real estate agent or broker will be more than happy to help you find what’s available for you. You need to be watchful always for availability of a good deal. It nothing seems very interesting at the moment, it’s sometimes a good idea to just keep in saving money for the time being and when it accumulates, you can use it wisely the moment a very good deal comes along.
8. AFFORDABILITY – What is the price of the property, what is the equity or down payment, what is the interest rate if financed, what is the monthly amortization, how much you are allowed to loan basing on your income. If your income is not enough for a 20 year term loan, you can choose the longest term up to 30 years depending on your age. Or you can combine the income of your family members. Pag-ibig can allow members of your family to become your co-applicant up to 3 applicants including yourself. These are the questions to ask to find out your affordability and if how much a financing institution can grant you loan. Again, a real estate broker or agent can help you find a way to make the property affordable for you.
9. ACQUIRABILITY – is the condition of the property that can make it easily acquired by the buyer by checking if it is titled, the tax declaration is current and real estate taxes are updated, the are no zoning violations nor violations of ordinance or existing laws, no boundary problems, not mortgaged nor having legal problems such as lis pendens, or not subject to road expansion, etc. The development must not have issued with CDO (Cease and Desist Order) by HLURB (Housing and Land Use Regulatory Board) for violation of building code, rules and regulations. The property is not prone to flood or land slides. Checking should be farther than what your eyes can see. Aside from interviews with neighbors, it may be a good idea to check back on the property during rainy days. Due diligence on the part of the buyer must be exercised as this is required by law. Due diligence is to do everything within the power of the prospect buyer to check and protect himself from troublesome deals. Negligence to do this could produce disastrous results.
10. APPLICABILITY – Applicability means the property is suitable, appropriate, useful and serves a purpose. So, even if it is not the most ideal property and even if it’s not the best deal at the moment, for as long as it serves a good purpose, it’s a good deal.
The above 10 A’s of Property Acquisition is written by the author to help real estate buyers to make sure that they get the value for their money. As we can observe in the internet and numerous websites today, too many brokers and agents ENTICE prospect buyers by their usual practice of RESERVE NOW! TO AVOID PRICE INCREASE!. For me, it’s absurd to hurry up buyers making them fear of the price increase or any form of enticement. The motive is clear, which is nothing but just to make a sale. In contrast, I strive to make sure that my prospect buyers will be disclosed with everything they need to know in order to help make sure that they make the right investment decision. I believe that sharing is caring, and it’s my passion.