What do Millenials want in a House?

Oftentimes, taste is just a matter of age. In this case, it’s an irrefutable fact that baby boomers and millenials will have different preferences when it comes to real estate. While some might prefer the solitude of being in a quiet, suburban home, others refuse to be torn far away from their busy lifestyle in the big city. So what exactly do millenials want to have in their own house?Read More »

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Home Floors: One Story or Two?

A 2002 survey found out that more than half of Americans preferred one-story homes over two-story ones. The baby boomer generation can be credited for that

With many Americans reaching their golden years, their limited mobility will make two-story homes an impractical choice. Yet, there’s still no right or wrong answer, just like choosing between a new or used car. In the end, it will all boil down to what the buyer really needs in a home. Here’s a comparison of one and two-story properties.

Zoning

Many cities place restrictions on lateral expansion or zoning; a house can’t expand beyond the specified limit, even if it’s his or her property. Although there are some restrictions in building height, as well, adding an extra story to the house will significantly add more living space. The addition of a basement can also be treated as a plus.

Maintenance

Keeping a multi-story house clean is a big chore; some families don’t have the time to do that. A one-story house can easily fit a family of four while keeping the upkeep low.

Emergency

In case of fire or flood, everyone can be evacuated much faster in a single-story house because there’s no need to warn the kids on the second floor. However, a second story also has its pros, like acting as the high ground for furniture and other possessions during a flood. Myrtle Beach is especially prone to storm surges, so a second floor might help.

Condominium: Not a Building, a Form of Ownership

When you ask people to differentiate between a condominium and an apartment, they usually base their answers on the structure itself. A condominium is, more often than not, a high-rise building filled with dozens of living spaces while an apartment is usually two to three stories high with only a handful of units. The distinction, however, gets more complicated.

This is because a “condominium” doesn’t refer to the building but rather the form of real estate ownership. The term is a combination of two Latin words: “con,” meaning “together with” and “dominium,” from which the word “dominion” comes from. Putting these meanings together, the term “condominium” means the “right to own together.”

To put this in perspective, in a condominium, everybody living in one is an owner. They own a part of the condo, which is their respective unit, so to speak. It didn’t matter how many stories a residential building had; if everybody owns a piece of the pie, it’s a condominium. An apartment can be a condominium if the terms of ownership are structured like one.

The condominium’s counterpart is rent, where the owner of the building— be it low-rise or high-rise— is the sole proprietor. Occupants are welcome to reside in its living spaces, but they don’t own a piece of it. In a condominium setting, if you “rent” a condo, it means you’re renting space from the owner of a piece of the entire condominium system.

The Typical Costs Involved in Buying a Home

Buying a house is an exciting venture. However, excitement can betray you in buying without carefully considering the overall cost. Apart from the house and lot, there are other expenses inherent in a home purchase. While these seem small individually, the sum might surprise you. Here’s a list of the major costs you have to prepare for:

Home Appraisal and Inspection

To know the true value of the house, you will need home appraisal, which can cost between $200 and $450. On the other hand, a separate inspection should be conducted to know which parts of the house need repair and maintenance and how much this would affect its value. Make sure your home is inspected for molds, termites, and other forms of damage.

Mortgage Application Fee

Applying for a mortgage costs around $500. This serves as payment for the initial service provided by the mortgagee to you. In most cases, this fee is non-refundable, even if you’ve decided to withdraw the application after.

Closing Costs

Closing costs” refer to the total of several other expenses that has to be made to finally transfer the property to the new owner. These typically include mortgage insurance, real estate taxes, and homeowners insurance. All in all, this can be a huge chunk in your budget.

Myrtle Beach: Laid Back Coastal Living

Planning to buy a home in Myrtle Beach? Don’t forget your flip-flops.

 

Generally, restaurants and establishments in the city support the coastal lifestyle of its residents and do not impose strict dress codes, if at all. Myrtle Beach prides itself on having a laid-back atmosphere for both locals and tourists—something that has enticed many to stay longer, and even take up residence in the place.

 

Another reason to kick back is the city’s low cost of living, a feature prevalent in many parts of eastern U.S. Affordable housing cost is one of Myrtle Beach’s best attractions, with a cost of living index (COLI) of 75.5. To illustrate, if you’re buying a house for $100,000 in a different community, a house in Myrtle Beach with the same specs will only cost you $75,500.

 

That means savings of $24,500, which can be used for other expenses. Utilities, for instance, have a COLI of 120.2 and health care 107.0.