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Real Estate Investing Using the MLS | Finding deals ON market in Philadelphia and Delaware County

How do you find good deals in the Philadelphia area on the MLS in today’s market? You may be skeptical that you can find a deal on the MLS in markets like Delaware County when all the investor gurus tell you that you that the only way you can make money is to find deals off market.

In this video, I share five tips to find great real estate investment opportunities in Philadelphia on the MLS

00:00 Overview
02:46 Stats for off-market deals sold by owners
03:43 Tip 1: Build a relationship with a local realtor each market
06:46 Tip 2: Monitor the seasoned listing on the MLS
07:32 Tip 3: Monitor price adjustments on the MLS
08:21 Tip 4: Read the descriptions for seller headaches
10:20 Tip 5: Think about other deal terms other than price
12:20 Point on wholesalers

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Buying and Living In a Duplex: How to Pick the Right Property

What should you keep in mind when you are trying to find a duplex or triplex that you can use as your primary residence and also as an investment?

In today’s video, I will share with you 5 tips questions you should ask that will allow you to buy a multifamily with the least money down and with the lowest rates as an owner-occupied borrower.

0:00 Overview
2:45 Do you want to live there?
5:34 What is the potential cash flow?
9:00 Does the layout help you or hurt you?
10:45 Timeline to find tenants?
12:15 Are the leases flexible?
13:25 Occupancy requirements for house hacking

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Selling Inherited Real Estate: Costly Mistakes To Avoid

How can you make sure that you are doing the right thing you inherit a property from a loved one passes away?

In today’s video, I will share with you 5 tips that will give you more peace of mind that you are acting in a way that both honors the memory of your loved one and preserves the value of what may be some of the largest assets, their real estate, your loved one had.

0:00 Overview
1:54 Mistake #1 Not filing the correct estate paperwork
2:37 Mistake #2 Missing outstanding liens
3:56 Mistake #3 Poor communication amongst heirs
5:05 Mistake #4 Neglecting property maintenance
6:20 Mistake #5 Poor planning with removing personal belongings
8:30 And a little about inheritance taxes

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Benefits of a Financial Planner Who Gets Real Estate Investing

How can a financial planner protect you from making financial mistakes as a new investor?

Are you finding it difficult to find a financial advisor that doesn’t give you a blank stare or worse yet try to talk you out of going too far down the real estate investing journey?

In today’s video, I will show you how a financial planner who is knowledgeable about real estate investing can help you better reach your overall personal financial goals whether its more financial freedom today or wealth that can be passed on to your family. I am sharing an interview with Cynthia Meyer of Real Life Planning, who is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ and holds the CFA® charter.

00:00 Intro
03:20 Cynthia’s role as a financial mentor to rental property investors
05:39 What should be in a financial plan for real estate investors
06:23 Why financial planners are famous for discouraging real estate investing
07:45 Areas of financial planning focus as you scale
11:22 Financial planner who invests in real estate
12:51 How do you know whether it is a good time to invest
16:08 Confusion over what makes a good real estate investment deal
17:24 How do you set expectations on a “good enough” deal
20:35 Risk management questions as investors
22:34 Biggest risk is in your 1st property
24:15 Managing vacancies
25:18 Avoiding the mistake of overleveraging
28:54 Taking a holistic view of debt
32:00 Nothing goes up in a straight line in real estate investing
34:05 Challenges for short-term rental investors in 2023
35:10 Achieve your life goals with the right financial plan
37:18 More on the higher risks with your first rental property

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Ask These Questions BEFORE You Buy a Property With Existing Tenants

Is buying a rental property with a tenant already there a bad idea? How will you know whether the tenants that you inherit will be a headache?

In this video, I will show you how you can better protect your interests when buying a property with existing tenants so that you make more money.

Here are 5 questions you should ask while you are evaluating a property with existing tenants.

00:00 Protecting your interests with inherited tenants
02:06 Type of lease?
03:39 Balance of security deposits held?
04:45 Long term tenant?
06:05 Tenant payment history?
07:06 Ease of managing the tenant?
08:59 Other due diligence tips for buying rental properties

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Where to Buy Rental Properties | West Philadelphia, PA

Is West Philadelphia a good place to buy rental properties and be a landlord? Take a neighborhood tour with me of Cobbs Creek and Cedar Park in West Philly.

These are great neighborhoods for both single family and multifamily rentals.

00:00 Introduction
01:54 Current development projects in University City
02:55 MLS view of West Philadelphia
06:20 Walking Tour of parts of Cedar Park and Cobbs Creek
11:23 Sales and Rental Stats for West Philadelphia 19143
14:22 Upside to investing in West Philadelphia

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Are home inspections worth the money? Tips for investors and home buyers

Is the home inspection a step that you can afford to skip when buying a property as an investor or even a traditional home buyer, especially with an as-is sale? In this video, I speak with Ross Kennedy from Kennedy Home Inspections about how you can best use a professional home inspection for due diligence and leverage during negotiations.

0:00 Overview
2:35 Kennedy Home Inspections background
3:47 How you can be fooled by online photos
6:00 Sellers getting home inspections prior to going on the MLS
8:13 How do you approach home inspections for As-Is sales
10:55 Using home inspections to get swag at renovation budget
12:00 Major vs minor home defects
15:40 Importance of specific wording on home inspection reports
18:02 Where buyers should focus attention during home inspections
21:45 Learn about the most important systems of the house vs. cosmetic repairs
22:58 Misunderstood defects
25:19 When an old house becomes a problem
28:10 The facts about knob & tube wiring
31:55 Difference between local municipality requirements and home inspection checklist
35:56 Appraiser’s (or lender’s) repair checklist
39:00 How the house tells the story
41:00 Setting expectations about what could come up at a home inspection
44:05 Discovering renovation work done without proper permits
47:00 Value of knowing overall health of the property

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Renovation contract mistakes: Planning tips for rental property investors

In this video, we discuss how the scope of work document can protect new real estate investors from surprises and conflicts.

We chat again with home inspector and contractor Curtis Niles of Armor Home Inspections (https://armoredhomeinspections.com/) to highlight the value of a clear written contract.

You can watch Part 1 here:    • Renovation planning tips for rental p…  

You can also find Armor home Inspections on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/ArmoredHI/

Key moments in the video
1:52: Lack of detail in the requirements given to GC
4:12: At what point should contractor be paid
6:23: The importance of the written contract
7:40: The mistake of getting the wrong contractor
9:40: How much does GC outsource to subcontractors
12:00: Contractors who ask for a lot of money upfront
15:03: Having a good renovation experience as a new investor

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Renovation planning tips for rental property investors

In this video, we discuss how new investors can best leverage their home inspector along with a general contractor to get better renovation estimates and have less budget surprises.

We chat with home inspector and contractor Curtis Niles of Armor Home Inspections (https://armoredhomeinspections.com/) to cover the tips from the home inspection report to the scope of work document.

You can also find Armor home Inspections on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/ArmoredHI/

Key moments in the video
1:13 Overview of using renovations to add value for investments
4:38 Tips for developing preliminary budget estimates before you place offer
6:43 Rules of thumb for costs per square foot in Philadelphia area
9:25 Role of home inspector vs contractor
11:23 How to maximize the timeline with inspectors and other home experts
13:43 What should be on your initial scope of work document?
15:43 When do you need a structural engineer to review issues?
21:12 What is project management?
25:38 Getting help as an out-of-state investor with project management

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Why You Shouldn’t Ignore Zoning When Investing in Real Estate

Wealth. Legacy. Lifestyle.

 

Action Inspiration

Don’t be afraid to take a big step. You can’t cross a chasm in two small jumps. David Lloyd George, former British Prime Minister

Why You Shouldn’t Ignore Zoning When Investing in Real Estate

Zoning is not the sexiest real estate topic. However, ignorance in this area can cost you money with both buying and selling investment real estate.

1) Understand the area’s current zoning

Before you buy a property, you want to be clear on what you can do by right or by permission. Often, you cannot rely on information from the current owner. It is best to verify this information on the city’s website or a zoning official.

Building requirements for vacant lots may vary for setbacks and the minimum width to build any structure at all. For instance, the value of a narrow lot is diminished if it is too small to build a house by zoning standards.

It is also good to know what is “in favor” at the zoning board. Parking and recovery homes bring much discussion across Delaware County and Philadelphia.

2) Stay Alert to Planned Zoning Changes

Zoning ordinances evolve to meet the strategic plan for the neighborhoods. Sometimes, this vision of the elected officials may be ahead of the current economics. If the local municipality has prohibited the highest use of your property since you bought the property, it may create a challenge when you try to sell.

In this case, the city may require you to apply for a variance to continue an approved use that has been active for decades. The variance process costs both time and money (the fees to review your application vary by municipality).

For sellers, an appeal may be worth it. Without it, a seller may be forced to hold onto a property longer than desirable. Potential quality buyers may opt to walk away rather than battle the zoning board. Often, it may be easier for the seller to go through the appeal process to plead the case for economic hardship to sidestep the existing code.

3) Document known non-conforming use

If your property does not comply with the known ordinances, register your use with your local municipality. There is no excuse to be unsure (again see #1).

For example, you have treated your property as a two-family rental, but the current zoning calls for only single-family homes. If you can show consistency in this use with no negative impact on your neighbors, you can make a good case for a variance approval. This action will allow you to market a legally approved use.

September Key Market Statistics

(Statistics shown are for rolling 12 months ending in September)

(19143) West Philadelphia-Cobbs Creek/Cedar Park

Sept 17 Sept 18% CHG
Total Sales5055529%
Lowest Sales $7K$14K100%
Highest Sales $950K $800K-16%
Average Sales $137K$157K15%
Days On Market 5436-33%

(19104) West Philadelphia-University City/Mantua

Sept 17Sept 18 % Chg
Total Sales 1831904%
Lowest Sales $13K$18K39%
Highest Sales $1,325K$1,250K -6%
Average Sales $250K$259K4%
Days On Market 4840-17%

(19139) West Philadelphia-Walnut Hill/Haddington/Mill Creek

Sept 17 Sept 18% Chg
Total Sales 26232123%
Lowest Sales $5K$8K50%
Highest Sales $607K$635K5%
Average Sales $89K
$110K22%
Days On Market 5240-23%

Upper Darby

Sept 17 Sept 18% Chg
Total Sales 1,1431,2015%
Lowest Sales $17K$20K18%
Highest Sales   $435K$435K0%
Average Sales $129K$139K8%
Days On Market 67681%

Chester

Sept 17 Sept 18% Chg
Total Sales 21023110%
Lowest Sales $5K $5K0%
Highest Sales   $165K$255K55%
Average Sales $53K$58K10%
Days On Market 57 6720%

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