Renting to Own? How to Make Sure Your Property is a Sound Investment

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One of the biggest investments one can make is in the purchase of private real estate. Whether you’re deciding to go ahead on a rent to own offer for a beloved condo or are in the market to purchase an office building, there are specific ways to make sure that you are putting your time and money into a sound investment. One of the most important ways to double-check your investment is to take extra measures to assess the internal construction of the building itself. There are many things you will need to check off the list, so here is how to get started:

First, do some simple tests on your own.

The way to weed out one property from another is to know exactly how to spot good construction and spotty construction as a layperson. While people without intimate knowledge of construction don’t have too much to go on, there are simple things you can do on your own to make sure that a property is worth any extra investigation. A good way to determine the quality of the construction is to knock on the walls. If they shake or seem overly thin when you knock on them, then you will know that not much money went into the construction of the space, i.e. little insulation inside the walls and possibly cheap building materials. You can also check on the noise levels. Have one person go upstairs or into a different room and say something loudly. If you can hear them, loud and clear, then the walls may be so thin as to indicate poor construction.

Second, get the inside info on the building materials and contractors.

If the building looks good to you after an initial inspection, then the next thing to do is to find out as much information as possible about how the building was constructed and who was doing the contracting. The current owner of the property should fully disclose the names of the builders to you, and you should also be able to double check this in public housing records. Doing a bit of research into the reputation of anyone involved in the construction of the building is a good idea and a very smart business move.

Finally, hire an inspector.

When you’ve narrowed down a property to the point that you are seriously considering a purchase, it’s time to call in a professional. Look for residential building inspectors with solid reputations. Meet with the inspector of your choice and tell him or her about any hesitations you may have about the property, what you are looking to pay for it and how many years you are going to need to pay down your housing loan. Then, go around with the inspector as he or she looks at the property. The inspector will not have any stake in the buying or selling of the property and will be able to provide a reliable third-party opinion on whether the construction is sound, the asking price is reasonable, and the property, as a whole, will hold up well beyond the amount of time you will be paying off a loan. While purchasing a home is a huge decision, it’s a decision that people make every day. To do it right, you only need to focus on getting as many reliable facts as possible and taking careful precaution before jumping in to the investment.

An expert in the construction industry, freelance writer Kristie Lewis offers tips and advice on choosing the best construction management colleges. She welcomes any questions and comments you might have at