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Help me with my dream house

Discussion in 'Living in Sin (City that is)' started by suiken, Dec 4, 2013.

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  1. suiken

    suiken Tourist

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    Hi guys I just moved to Vegas, I am looking for a house! I have been looking everywhere and if you guys can help me find my dream home that will be awesome!

    I can live anywhere it doesn't have to be limited to a certain area, I am kinda semi-retired. So which area is best bang for the buck? I am looking for a safe, good above average neighborhood, big lot so there are some distance and privacy between me and the neighbors, maybe 11k sq ft and more. I would prefer the house to be newer like 1998 and newer. Close to shopping and stores, like within 15,20 min. my budge is around 270k to 340k

    Is it good idea to get a house where it dropped the most in prices? maybe there are a lot of empty houses around and the area is turning into s**t.

    When you guys get a used house do you pay attention to who was builder? or if you get a good inspector then it's ok? They usually don't provide that information.

    One of the houses I really like is in Aliante, the builder is KB home, now I heard KB home they ain't too good as a builder. But I really like the house the owner seems to have done a good job maintaining it and kept it in pretty good shape. However you don't know about the places you can't see in the house so I will have two inspectors to check out the house if I buy it. But I bet there will be some problems inspectors can't see so what do you guys say? KB home don't buy it? it was built in 2003. Inspectors can't see everything and Aliante even thought it's a good area, it's surrounded by crappy ghetto areas right? They might influence Aliante more than the other way around. thanks guys for the help!
     
  2. suecasey

    suecasey Low-Roller

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    I live in Aliante. Where are these "crappy ghetto areas" you speak of? I'm not aware of them. This is a very nice area, surrounded by other very nice areas. :)
     
  3. NickyDim

    NickyDim VIP Whale

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    Lone Mountain and Centennial hills have larger plots and is not very densely populated. With your budget you could find a very nice large home on a large piece of prop and still be less than 15 minutes from downtown.
     
    Last edited: Dec 4, 2013
  4. vegasbound

    vegasbound Moderator

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    Aliante is a nice area but it's too far out for my liking. Same goes for Centennial. You can get more for your money out there though.

    I'm not a fan of KB homes. They are in most neighborhoods. I personally like American West homes. The trouble with new(er) construction is that the homes are close together and yards are small. When we bought our home we wanted something newer, but went with a home built in 2001 (Spring Valley) because we liked the bigger lot/yard. With new(er) construction there are a few prime lots that are bigger than others (usually on corner or cul de sac), buying brand new is tricky because of the way they are released and/or the lottery. Buying resale is nice because you know exactly what you're getting when you write the contract.

    We had an inspection done and bought a home warranty to ease the unknown.
     
  5. ken2v

    ken2v This Space For Rent

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    One person's barrio could be another's dream, so the bottom line when it comes to location, access, look, style, surroundings and all that is that it matters not what someone else thinks; it's your life, your needs, your $$$.

    KB isn't one of the West's most stalwart merchant builders, and its products are a far sight removed from what it was putting up 40 years ago. And that problem is exacerbated, and not just for KB, in a market where shit is going up faster than it is being sold, where contractors and subs are wheeling and dealing and whirling and tearing through crews. I cannot speak to a specific product up there, but none of this would be a surprise to anyone in the region familiar with KB. (And, yes, just as Yugo made a few cars that actually stayed together and Mercedes once in a while lets a lemon out the door, individual mileage will vary, but trends are trends.) Before we bought this place we had been looking at KB homes here, and though build in the mid-aughts we just saw way too many obvious problems, many replicated across a number of different homes, to proceed, particularly given our trepidation with the company in the first place. (Yet those homes were passing "inspection" because they were being re-sold and financed.)

    Home inspections are only as good as the inspector and what he/she can get in to check and what he/she can't. In the desert, soils and compaction reports are so important, but you're also at the whim of the geotech firm and whomever received and reviewed on the city/county side (perhaps someone under contract if the market is flying).

    Not trying to sound negatorio here as we all buy houses and face these things.
     
  6. suiken

    suiken Tourist

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    "buying brand new is tricky because of the way they are released and/or the lottery" Could you elaborate more on that please? I don't know anything about it, so what kind of problems will I run into in the future with brand new houses?

    Lone mountain and Centennial hills aren't 15 min from the strip are they? but I heard CH is really nice I am going to check it out some more!!

    So KB is really shitty huh, I really like the area, lot size and how the owner maintained the house. I will look at more houses I guess!!!

    Yeah I heard Aliante is really nice, they compare it with Summerlin and Henderson etc, I guess the area right above downtown is bad but other than that it's ok.

    thanks a lot guys for the help, any other areas for best bang for the buck?
     
  7. ken2v

    ken2v This Space For Rent

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    I'm not seeing "shitty." They're just a huge builder of homes who churn out product and that always can be dicey. But they're also a huge builder of homes so obviously a lot of people are buying product and not dying by the thousands as trusses collapse. Just a bit of caveat emptor.

    I hope you're doing serious due diligence on this and not just getting all consumed by the prospect of moving to Vegas. Drive around, note the names of builders, make some calls, do some serious research, make a list of what you WANT in this house and how much you are willing to spend, and that will determine your bang/buck. If we moved to Vegas we'd demand a view, 'cause that is key on our list. Others not so much.

    What Kellee is talking about is folks putting money hard on houses, back during the feeding frenzy, and there might not have even been sticks in the air yet.

    Have you ever gone through a home purchase before?
     
  8. suiken

    suiken Tourist

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    ya this will be my first house purchase! I dont' know a whole lot and I need to do as much research as I can! and you can't trust RE agent 100% you never know if what they are are true! So yeah, kinda difficult and kinda confusing for me right now, have been looking at many houses and gone throught couple agents. better be safe than sorry I guess!!
     
  9. vegasbound

    vegasbound Moderator

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    Before we decided to go for the ease of an apartment, we considered buying new. We liked an American West (same builder as our house) home in Southern Highlands. However, the builders are playing games to keep demand high. They are only releasing in phases (basically, built to order) so there is less risk and less supply means they net more money. We could put on deposit down to have a home released in the next phase, but they couldn't guarantee the lot we'd get. The prime lots - the one we wanted allowed space for boat/rv parking - were left up to a lottery. It was a gamble I refused to take. I'd rather let an investor buy it, and rent (or buy) it later when it's built.

    We decided to rent in the area to see how we liked the neighborhood since we've only lived in Spring Valley. There are very few rentals in Southern Highlands so we opted to live in Silverado Ranch. Similar distance to the strip, just a bit older with more conveniences. Our lease will be up in July. We'll check back with Southern Highlands then just to weigh our options, but I'm perfectly happy to stay put.

    Centennial Hills is 30 minutes to center strip via 95/15. Far longer during morning and evening commutes. Aliante is about 20 minutes via 215/15. Maybe at 3am it takes 15 minutes?
     
  10. TomTWI

    TomTWI High-Roller

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    There are many areas in LV I know nothing about so won't comment on the where. We did purchase a condo a couple years ago with only three days looking. Well actually it was thre days in Vegas but four months research. With you being already in LV it should make it easier.

    It's important to narrow your search and be realistic about what you can afford before involving an agent. If you don't, you will burn them out. Spend a couple hours a night researching on the internet areas with the type of home you like. Go to any open houses in the area. When you think you see an area you like check the crime stats. If that checks out do a drive by on a Saturday night. If the neighborhood still looks good, proximity to shopping etc., is it walkable if that's important (how long to get to the strip or downtown).

    Make sure you have your finances ready to go, cash is king but if not have a pre-approved loan. Then I would talk to a real estate agent with your dream and what area. They will appreciate that you are focused are realistic and know what you want. Also know if you are willing to deal with a short sale or foreclosure listing.

    Good luck with your search.

    TomTWI
     
  11. suiken

    suiken Tourist

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    So I am looking at Aliante, Centennial hills, Southern highlands. They seem to be the best bang for the buck with some nice houses on them! I think also pretty good potential for real estate growth in those areas? Saw some houses in east vegas but they didn't go up or down much in the last 9 years!!

    What do you guys think about new vs old houses in current economy situation. Friend said it doesn't make sense to buy new now, much more expensive and you can get good deals on used houses. But it's brand new it won't depreciate much. What do you guys think?

    So in those locations what's the reasonable per sq ft? (for used houses) or how much can you low the listing price? I think it's a sellers market now as there ain't many houses available? that really sucks I thought it's a buyers market.

    They say don't use the house inspector from your agent, get an agent of your own. And get one with engineering background. Where do you guys look for inspectors? I need a good one !!!!! thanks guys
     
  12. vegasbound

    vegasbound Moderator

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    When I was in the market I would bookmark homes on realtor.com and divide the square footage by the purchase price, then add the price per sqft to the notes. So, when I reviewed the homes I liked I could quickly see the cost comparison. It's been 6 month since I was hunting, I'm sure prices have gone up quite a bit since. You'll quickly notice a trend, though, and be able to see the value in what's currently listed.

    As far as new vs. resale goes I wouldn't lock yourself into either. Just look for what meets your needs best. Do consider all options so you're not wondering what if.

    Try not to focus on appreciation/depreciation. Look for what serves you needs and will do so for the longest length of time. Its value only matters when you plan to sell. I've bought real estate with the best intentions and made the most informed decisions at the time and I've been burned 3x, timing and luck are everything. Booms and busts are part of gamble.

    My personal opinion is that we're headed for another bust. Home prices are inflated they increased too quickly with investors buying them up. Until people that live and work here own homes, I believe the market will remain unstable.
     
  13. suiken

    suiken Tourist

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    thanks a lot!


    hmmmmm do you think I should wait? wait for it to drop or maybe bust and buy? man I really need a house, I should just get the location, house etc that meet my needs. They all go up and down all the time.
     
  14. vegasbound

    vegasbound Moderator

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    See what's available. If you find your dream home, great! If not, no sweat. Rentals are far and wide, and fairly competitive.

    We rented our house two years after we shortsaled it to investors. We were so far underwater we'd never be right side up, poor timing! It worked out great for us, though, all things considered. Six months ago we opted to simplify and try apartment living, it so great not to have all that maintenance. Our savings is growing fast which allows for plenty of travel (a priority for us) or we're in the position to invest, if the market does go bust.
     
  15. bardolator

    bardolator Lifelong Low Roller

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    "Friend said it doesn't make sense to buy new now, much more expensive and you can get good deals on used houses. But it's brand new it won't depreciate much. What do you guys think?"

    Depreciation occurs so slowly that it is not that big an issue with real estate. New home sales are generally less flexible on price than resales because you're not buying from an individual. Of course, if the house is so new that it's not completed, you can customize it. If it's finished, you're paying the new price without gaining the option of customizing it.

    Get something you will still want to live in 20 years from now. The biggest waste of money in home buying and selling, market shifts aside, is the buying and selling. Every time you buy or sell, someone earns a hefty commission.

    Sorry, I don't know enough to comment on Vegas neighborhoods.
     
  16. TomTWI

    TomTWI High-Roller

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    I think you will see prices level off or drop slightly until spring and then start climbing again. That sir is an opinion :eek: .

    I agree renting is affordable right now. It would make sense to rent in an area if you're not sure that's what you want.

    Have you looked in to rent to own? I don't know too much about them but there is a company that will let you pick out any house on the market and buy it for you then rent it to you. Each month you gain some equity eventually you own it. I'm sure you are paying a premium but does take some of the risk out of buying a lemon. Just make sure you can walk away after a year if it's not what you want.

    Good luck.
     
  17. hammie

    hammie VIP Whale

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    This happened to my Niece (not in Vegas) she was renting to buy and in the course of her one year lease, the housing market crashed, she walked away. The owner sold it for a lot less shortly thereafter. Plus, during the lease, the wheels on my Niece's convertible were stolen, twice. Rent to own lets you test a neighborhood as well as seeing if you have a money pit. As far as new vs. used, depreciation does not really come into play, but things like the roof, heater, a/c are older and may require more maintenance in an older home. Good luck!
     
  18. suiken

    suiken Tourist

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    thanks a lot guys that's really helpful! so which company is this that does rent to own houses? however rent to own they are rare right? the selection is not that many but it's an option I guess.

    So it's a renter's market now? it's cheap and many houses are available? I should check out a few then, but I want it furnished any idea where I can find furnished houses or apt? the ones I found they are very expensive like 702housing.com. Cheapest there is 1300 a month.

    Yes buy then live in it for 20 years or a very long time is a good advice. If you move the costs is a lot to move!!! I need to plan out what I really want for the next 10,20, 30 years!
     
  19. suiken

    suiken Tourist

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    I found a house that's for sale by owner, so how do I buy it? I mean all the paperwork, escrow, title etc. Should I hire a real estate attorney? hire a real estate agent to handle it for me? or is it possible to do it myself after research it? what do you guys recommend thanks
     
  20. bardolator

    bardolator Lifelong Low Roller

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    Can't give you a definitive answer. Maybe someone else can. I bought my first home from a guy who used his lawyer to handle the transaction. No realty agency was involved. It worked okay and I didn't regret not having anyone to represent me. However, times have changed and my financial situation might have been different.

    Today in Las Vegas, I would never do what I did 40 years ago in my own hometown. Asking a lawyer who specializes in real estate what the charge would be to act on your behalf sounds like a prudent thing to do. These days, and in a city like Las Vegas, it's better to play it safe and have the big gun on your side.
     
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