Best Houses to Buy
When it comes to resale, do you know the best houses to buy? One of the biggest considerations when buying a home is resale. Resale is what price a particular home/property will command when it comes time to sell it.
You may be wondering if it makes a difference what type of house configuration has the highest resale value, or if it even makes a difference whether a two story has more appeal than a ranch. Or if a split level is more popular than a cottage style home.
Most of us, at one point in our lives, will want or need to sell a home. This could be for many different reasons: job transfer, divorce, moving closer to the kids, down size, up size, a change of scenery, tired of cold winters, death of a loved one, or for many other reasons.
And, of course, if you are a real estate investor, you may buy many homes in the course of your career. It just makes financial sense to know the best houses to buy, and buy right. Ideally, when you buy, you want to appeal to the broadest market audience possible, in order to command the highest price possible for your home, when it comes time to sell.
This is not to say that you shouldn’t buy what you like. There are other considerations than resale, although you could argue that there is not a more important consideration when looking for the best houses to buy. You may truly like a home that may not be the most favorable for resale.
After all, you have to live in the home that you buy for the foreseeable future. Feeling comfortable with your home purchase, despite it’s configuration, is perhaps the most important consideration. If you love the home, you will be happy with it, and if you love it, there is a good chance that others will also.
There may be other reasons why you need a certain type of home, such as,for a big family. If you need a lot of bedrooms, and baths, you may be more limited to 2 or more story homes, or a multi level, as these typically contain more square footage, and more bedrooms, and baths than other types of homes.
As a Realtor with experience selling, and buying different types of homes for clients, I have seen a definite pattern concerning different types of houses for resale. Certain types of homes are more appealing than others. There are exceptions to this rule, but generally speaking certain types of houses will sell faster, and for a higher price than others will.
This day and age, 2016, there are feature trends in houses that make them more appealing, and thus easier to sell. Such as, open floor plans, eat in kitchens, master bedroom suites, hardwood floors, wood burning fireplaces, main floor laundrys, finished, walk out lower levels, and 2+ car attached garages. These features will help resale no matter what type of home you buy.
Here are the best houses to buy, to the least to buy for resale purposes. There are many other styles of homes than those listed here, but these are by far the most common in today’s real estate market, at least in the suburbs of larger American cities.
Ranch homes are clearly the best type of home/house to buy for resale. The biggest reason ranch homes are the favorite is because most everything is on one level. Most people, especially those getting up in age, don’t like having to walk up and down steps to get to and from levels in a home.
Most ranch homes are 3 bedroom, and 2 bath, which appeals to the largest market of buyers, but even 2 bedroom, 2 bath ranch homes are desirable to a good size market.
A finished, or partially finished, walk out lower level with a full bath, and at least one bedroom is also ideal in a ranch. And, if you can find a ranch with a main floor laundry, you can rest assured, that if and when you want to sell, you will likely have a good pool of buyers to get you a good price, and a quick sale.
2. 1/12 Story
The 1 1/2 story house consists of a main level, and a partial second story, perhaps with a bedroom or two, and a bath, and an attic. These homes tend to be popular with small families, and if small enough, with those looking to downsize.
The utility, and upkeep costs for a 1 1/2 story tend to be light to moderate, and can make things less stressful than with larger homes.
This configuration includes the famous Cape Cod style home, as well as, the popular Country style home. Ideally, if you can find a 1 1/2 story home with a main floor master bedroom suite, and a main floor or second floor laundry, you will up your chances for a higher price, and quicker sale at selling time.
3. 2+ Story
A 2+ story home consists of two large living levels. A main level, and a 2nd story that is close to the same size as the main or first level. The second story will normally consist of a number of bedrooms, one or more baths, and could include a sitting room, office, laundry, and an attic. This type of home is ideal for a large, or growing family, and appeals to a typically younger demographic.
The normal large square footage size of these 2+ stories can be a drawback due to higher utility bills, more common repairs, and more difficult cleaning, and upkeep.
However, if you have a large, or growing family, you must have more bedrooms, and space, and a 2+ story is often the only configuration that fits the bill. Thus, there is always some demand for these larger homes. Unfortunately, the demand is less than with a ranch, or with a 1 1/2 story house.
Many 2+ story homes in the market today were built many decades ago before the advent of open floor plans, main floor laundrys, eat in kitchens, and main floor master bedroom suites. The more of these features you can find in a 2+ story, the better it will be for resale.
Also with the baby boomer generation at or near retirement age, and many looking to downsize, this type of home is not your best bet if your objective is good resale prices, and speedy sales.
4. Split Level or Split Foyer
A split level or split foyer home generally consists of two living levels, an upper level that has the kitchen, breakfast room, living room, and 2+ bedrooms, and one or more baths.
And the lower level is normally finished or partially finished, and has a family room, sometimes a bath, an extra bedroom, a tuck under garage, an unfinished area, and often a door directly to the back yard.
This type of home is popular as a starter home for first time home buyers or those on a limited budget, as they tend to be less expensive than most other types of homes. The utility, and upkeep costs are normally less than with most other types of homes, and can make a difference when the income is less, and the budget is tight.
The biggest drawback for the split level, as with most other types of homes, are the steps. There are usually steps leading from the driveway to the front door, and once inside, from the foyer, there are steps leading up to the main level, and more steps leading down to the lower level.
Split levels sometimes have a cramped feel due to smaller rooms, and less square footage. They are sometimes in less desirable neighborhoods also, which can keep the resale prices down.
Due to their lower listing prices, there is always some demand for split levels. If the home has been maintained well, there should be little trouble selling the home. However, prices for these dwellings do tend to be less than with other types of homes, so you will likely realize less of a profit.
5. Multi Level
A multi level home is similar to a split level, yet it has one of more levels than the split level does. It normally consists of 3 or more living levels. A typical multi level configuration will have a living room and a kitchen on the main level, an upper level with bedrooms, and one or more baths, and a lower living level such as a family room with a fireplace that may lead out to a tuck under garage.
The lower level will sometimes have an additional half bath, and an unfinished area for storage, and to house the furnace, washer/dryer, etc. These multi levels can be very attractive, and appealing, and they can also be quite unappealing if they are very large, and not maintained well.
The biggest drawback, as with other house types, is the amount of steps that you will encounter. Also, with the different levels, it is not easy to see, and communicate to others in the house, when family members are in different levels, which can be a source of frustration.
Multi levels are not inexpensive to heat and cool due to their square footage, and can also be troublesome to keep in good working order, and to keep clean.
These homes are reasonably practical for large families, and growing families, as is the 2+ story style.
A cottage type home can best be described as any home that is on one level, and has 3 or less bedrooms normally 2 bedrooms, and one bath, with less than 1000 square feet of living space.
Many of the cottage style homes were built in America, just following the end of World War II. They were relatively inexpensive, and seemed just right for the returning GI with a new wife, and perhaps a small, young family. Cottage homes sprouted up in the suburbs of many cities.
Although fine for singles, couples, or couples with small families, these homes can be quickly outgrown. Cottage homes usually have a cramped feel with their smaller rooms, and less square footage.
Considered starter homes, or downsize homes, there is some demand for these smaller homes, with first time home buyers just starting out, and older adults looking for less, and cheaper upkeep, and fewer stairs to negotiate.
I grew up in one of these cottage style homes in the late 50’s through the mid 70’s, and have some good memories of it, but it was also at times very cramped, and uncomfortable, and totally lacking in privacy.
Due to their older age, if these homes were not maintained, they can be difficult to sell. Although these cottages are not the best houses to buy, due to the lower listing prices, if they are livable, and in a good area, you should be able to sell them fairly quickly, just not at a hefty price.
These type of structures include pre fabricated, manufactured, and mobile homes. Although there is a big difference between a nice, manufactured or pre fabricated home, and a mobile home, they are considered in the real estate industry the same type of homes.
These homes are almost always a big step down in quality from a constructed or professionally built home, and not surprisingly, are not the best houses to buy.
Manufactured homes are built out of a factory that fabricates, and combines different, large parts of the structures. The finished product is then taken to the lot, and the final touches put together to form the house.
Although in the case of a mobile home, they are usually completely built in a factory, and transported to a lot or mobile home park. Generally speaking, these types of homes use lower quality components, and are not as solid as the conventional built home.
They are also not as safe, or as durable. As a result, they are often expensive to heat and cool, and upkeep can be expensive due to more frequent breakdowns, and issues. Oftentimes repair parts are tough to locate, and a premium must be paid, assuming you can find what you need.
That said, I have seen some wonderful manufactured homes that were well built, had quality interiors, and felt just like an expensive, custom built home. Unfortunately, whether it is stigma, or reality, these homes do not appreciate in value like a regular structure, and can be difficult to sell.
The good news is, these homes are affordable, and thus appealing to a segment of the population, as there is always demand for lower priced housing. Quite often a manufactured or mobile home will be on a nice, large lot that offers seclusion, fresh air, and quiet.
So, if you are not in a big hurry to sell, and you have realistic expectations about what your manufactured home will sell for, it may be an option for you.
Taking into consideration what you may be able to sell your next home for, before you buy it, is one of the smartest financial moves you can make. Everything else being equal, why not buy a home that will give you the best chance at future selling success.
Now you know the best houses to buy. Not just the best houses to buy for resale, but the best houses to buy for optimum enjoyment for yourself, and for your family.