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Investing in Sarasota Real Estate

The real estate jitters. Rightly so. If you’re new to real estate or if this is the first time you’re investing in a Sarasota home – be it a single family detached home or a condo in a high-rise, the standard advice applies: engage the services of a real estate agent who knows the Sarasota area well. Some investors like to go it alone, but if they’ve never dabbled in real estate before, they could be missing out on excellent deals that only a real estate agent is aware of.

Investing Tips

If you’re new to investing in Sarasota real estate, the # 1 rule then is to find an agent with whom you can work comfortably. What kind of agent should you look for?

Tip # 1: someone who will, right from the start, describe service coverage and fees to the last detail. Is the real agent committed to giving you comprehensive information on all good areas of Sarasota? How much will auxiliary services cost?

Tip # 2: someone who can answer your questions about zoning, home prices in multiple categories, and someone with all the key information that will make your investing experience hassle-free: city services, health and medical centers, schools, recreational facilities, and other such information that is critical to your final decision.

Tip # 3: someone who offers to do a CMA (Competitive Market Analysis) before you make a firm offer on your selected Sarasota real estate. Normally the CMA is a document that realtors prepare for sellers only, but if they can extend that courtesy to you as a buyer, then you’re in the right direction. Since you are the investor in Sarasota real estate, the CMA can prove to be an indispensable tool.

Tip # 4: someone who sends you e-mails regularly and returns your phone calls so that you don’t get the feeling that you’ve been abandoned because there’s another investor with more dollars to shell out and who’s taking up a lot of the real estate agent’s time and energies.

Tip # 5: someone who will be there to hold your hand every step of the way. For example, when you’re ready to make a firm offer on a particular Sarasota home, the real estate agent should express the wish to be present so that he or she can do more “marketing” for you. Sellers of Sarasota real estate don’t run short of offers because Sarasota has had this allure for investors – local and foreign – for a long time, so your agent wants to make sure your offer stands out. Only an experienced agent can do this for you.

Also, investing in Sarasota means that you need an agent who can provide details not only on your investment and related acquisition services but also provide guidance on property management and leasing services for your home or condo.

Sarasota Real Estate Investment Association (REIA)

As an investor, you may also want to look into the Sarasota Real Estate Investment Association. It operates as an independent entity and does not offer any advice relating to legal issues, taxation, economic or investments. If your real estate agent is a member in good standing, he or she may be able to introduce you to other investors or help you get into a network. If you’re thinking of investing in several Sarasota properties, this is something you’d probably consider at a later time.

The REIA is composed of investors, lenders, title company lawyers and realtors who attend meetings regularly, exchanging ideas and information. Once you become a member, you can actively buy and sell property during meetings. Guests (non-members) are allowed one visit.

Thought of Foreclosures as an Option?

Many Sarasota home options are open to investors, one of which are foreclosures. If you have expert advice and the right information, you could get significant price reductions from foreclosed homes. Again, if you’ve never invested in a real estate foreclosure before, a Sarasota real estate specialist will be able to help you. Avoid the common pitfalls committed by newbies. Perhaps a pre-closure instead of a foreclosure might be the better alternative but only your realtor can help you evaluate the pros and cons.

Losing a home because an owner cannot fulfill his mortgage obligations is a harrowing ordeal. As a seller of a foreclosed property, you will want to be sensitive to this fact. Approach the property and owner in a non-aggressive manner. Your Sarasota real estate agent will be able to help you. They have people skills that have been honed for many years and they will be the first to tell you that foreclosures – while they can offer the investor great savings – can be a bitter pill to swallow for homeowners.