Due Diligence for an Online Real Estate Purchase in Detroit

By: Jared Pomranky

Purchasing Detroit real estate is made easy with technical advancements, allowing individuals from remote locations to profit from Detroit investment properties. Like banking and stock trading, buying a home or building in Detroit can be conveniently completed online. With a plethora of online services and communities to help, you can actually cover more ground than conventional legwork might produce.

Considering that nearly everyone is online, it is becoming more common that out-of-state investors are taking advantage of Detroit investment properties through phone and electronic transactions.

Finding Your Purchase
Advanced, high-tech realtors will feature photos and details pertaining to each property online, such as the frontage, square footage, age, amenities, and neighborhood. You may want to enlist the help of a professional Realtor in finding just what you want. For example, you could choose a Detroit Michigan real estate professional who specializes in rental property. Many people find that the value added of a Realtor can narrow the search or speed up the process.

Another excellent resource for conducting your due diligence for a Detroit real estate purchase is through the City of Detroit's website. A great deal of community information may be obtained about Detroit and its neighborhoods through this resource, along with listings of properties that the City of Detroit is directly selling.

Getting More Facts
The County Tax Assessor website is an excellent tool in researching more facts about specific Detroit real estate. On this website, you can obtain the sales history of a property, the year it was originally deeded, and all the conveyances. It is also a reliable source to verify the taxes, as well as to ascertain how assessed value has changed since the property was built.

Lay of the Land
It has been said that when you buy a house, you buy into a neighborhood. Driving around alone or with realtors may not be practical for an online purchase of Detroit property, so let the mouse do the driving. Google Maps is a valuable resource to evaluate the neighborhood, as well as to obtain a street-view perspective of the topography.

Propaganda and hype aside, your searches and virtual driving may yield more unbiased background than you would hear from someone on the selling end of a deal.

Verify Value Online
The county tax assessor sites indicate assessed value, not true market value. This can be a good thing when assessed value is lower than actual market prices. But how do you compare, and find the true worth of your prospective Detroit real estate purchase?

For updated comparative sales analysis, look online. Appraisers can offer objective comparisons, and many will fulfill your online request for specific comps. A free resource to conduct some general comparisons and assessments is Zillow, which may be an excellent place to begin.

The Human Touch
Web searches offer very rapid searches, but when the human touch is needed, it may be time to get on the phone. One voice that can be reassuring is that of an experienced property manager. As their compensation may be tied with how well they rent and manage the property, it is in their best interest to accurately portray the area. Home inspectors may also be valuable, as they assess the condition of your long distance asset.

Detroit investment properties are excellent for your income and long-term wealth, and given the advances of online purchases, becoming an investor in Detroit real estate has never been easier.

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