Homes For Sale: Which Type Is The Best Investment?

by : Simon Volkov

A variety of homes for sale are available in today's real estate market. The more common types include single family dwellings and multi-family real estate such as duplexes and apartment buildings. There are brand new homes, foreclosure homes, fixer-upper's and those which require a little extra tender loving care.

The majority of homes for sale in the U.S. are sold through licensed Realtors. Approximately ten-percent of homes on the market are offered as For Sale by Owner (FSBO), which may or may not be the best choice for potential buyers.

Although it is true you can oftentimes negotiate a better price by buying directly from the homeowner, there are also many opportunities for disaster. Should you decide to invest in FSBO, it's best to consult with a professional who understands this type of real estate transaction.

Many first-time buyers and real estate investors seek out foreclosure properties. Occasionally, foreclosure homes can result in significant savings. However, they are rarely a great bargain and require substantial work and money to get them back in livable condition.

Another type of homes for sale is bank foreclosures. Also referred to as real estate owned (REO), bank owned properties are foreclosure homes that did not sale at auction. Currently, banks require minimum bids of ninety-five cents on the dollar. If the balance due on the bank note is $100k, interested parties much make a minimum bid of $95k. More often than not, the bank will not accept the first offer made and will engage the buyer in multiple counter-offers before accepting the bid.

As you can see, there are numerous variables to consider when researching homes for sale. Although the current real estate market is shaky there are still numerous deals to be found. It simply takes persistence and patience to locate a home that makes for a sound investment. While it's impossible to determine the exact number of homes for sale within the U.S., some suggest there are millions of homes waiting to find a new owner.

Before you invest in any homes for sale, create a checklist which includes the following:

&bull the maximum amount you can afford
&bull how much money you have available for a down payment
&bull type of home you want to buy; i.e.; - new, used, fixer-upper, single family or multi-family
&bull areas where you wish to reside or invest in rental property

There are several ways to locate homes for sale in the area where you wish to invest. You can contact a professional Realtor, conduct research via the Internet, browse "Homes for Sale" magazines or drive through neighborhoods and make notes of properties of interest.

If you are new to real estate investing, it's best to use the services of a realtor for your first transaction. They can guide you through the process and help you avoid costly mistakes.

If you have experience in purchasing real estate, consider investing in a home for sale by owner. If you have time to invest in fixing up a distressed property, consider a foreclosure or REO property.

Although the market is currently on a downhill slide, history shows that real estate is still the best investment you can make. Take time to do your homework and you could build a substantial nest egg for your future!