When it comes to understanding the factors that come into play when buying or selling a home—or any practical real estate information at all—local high school (or even college) graduates are on their own. If any real estate information has even been touched upon, it will have been in the most cursory manner: at best, one line item in a Home Economics budgeting discussion.
That’s one reason why everyone from first time town homebuyers to itinerant real estate investors can benefit from the best of today’s how-to real estate books. Here are some of the popular oldies—as well as some valuable newcomers:
100 Questions Every First Time Home Buyer Should Ask is Ilyce Glink’s compilation of insights from top brokers across the country. Town first time buyers aren’t the only readers who will find this general reference valuable—local home sellers who want insight into the concerns of potential buyers will find it a useful resource. The “100 Questions” don’t address every local real estate information topic; but on the whole, this book is concise and informative.
Solid, practical information for homeowners readying their property for the local market can be found in Rhoney and Richard’s Smart Essentials for Selling Your Home. In the same way that 100 Questions book is also useful to sellers, this one would make excellent reading for prospective home buyers who recognize the importance of understanding sellers’ priorities. Smart Essentials is mercifully short: just 92 pages!
For more seasoned readers who might be considering an area residential investment, the bookshelves have plenty to offer:
The second edition of Gallinelli’s What Every Real Estate Investor Needs to Know about Cashflow has been around for a while, but comes highly recommended for its textbook-level explanation of how economists digest real estate information for investment purposes. The formulas are all there, as well as examples that demonstrate how to apply them. Reading it won’t encourage prudent town non-CPAs to do their own business tax returns—but will acquaint them with valuable foreknowledge on how their tax advisor approaches maximizing their refund. Its description of four different ways to make money from real estate can be eye-opening.
- Scotts’ The Book on Flipping Houses (how to buy, rehab, and resell residential properties) is a roadmap from start to finish on how to go about a lucrative house flip. There are many books on the subject, but this one is the leader of the pack. First published in paperback in 2013, it’s been a real estate information best seller ever since. Part of its wide appeal is the author’s (he’s a veteran flipper) candid step-by-step descriptions of how he executes his own projects. The author’s other book (with co-author Brandon Turner) is:
The Book on Estimating Rehabs. This is a book local real estate information-seekers should find well worth its hefty paperback price tag ($22.49 on Amazon). It details a variety of different approaches to projecting a rehab budget, including a breakdown of the 25 components that need evaluating.
Books can provide invaluable background information for real estate newcomers and veterans alike. Another essential is the assistance of a knowledgeable agent: good reason to give me a call!