When you spot the perfect luxury home in a gated neighborhood, you may be ready to put in an offer, secure that place, and anxiously await the day when you move into your dream house. However, before you put in a bid for a luxury home, it's important to know all of the facts. Here are three straightforward questions you should ask before putting in an offer.
1. What Are the HOA Rules?
Every HOA is a little different, but each can have drastic effects on what your living experience is like. Some HOAs cover everything from cable and pool cleaning to private security, while others dictate nothing more than basic aesthetic standards for homes in the area. However, it's a good idea to know exactly what the HOA controls before you buy a home, especially if you plan to make changes to the property.
See if you can get a copy of the local HOA governance documents so you can read more about what the dues are, what they offer, and which rules are in place that could impact your home. That way, you can budget for and plan projects more effectively and avoid homes that you wouldn't be able to change.
2. How Much Does Upkeep Cost?
While those French gardens may look pristine and that pool may be perfect, luxury homes can be very expensive to keep up, especially if the place has a lot of added features like fountains, beautiful gardens, or complex audio-visual systems.
Talk with your realtor and ask them to find out how much the previous owners spent on yearly upkeep so that you can plan for things. Typically, these types of costs could be listed in the disclosures, but see if you can get any more information to help you to make an informed decision.
3. How Does the Historical Value Stack Up?
Some luxury properties are worth more than others, and some communities are better kept than other neighborhoods. Make sure to do a very thorough comparative analysis of the property as it compares with other homes so you can see what kind of returns you can expect down the road.
Make sure to take notes about the property when you talk with your real estate agent so you can do your research and discuss your options afterwards. Try to keep your options open when you are looking for a new home just in case a better deal comes along. When you compare one home to other houses you are considering, take into account the overall cost of ownership and the opportunity the property could present to better understand your options.
Keep these questions in mind as you look at luxury homes.