orlando home buying tips

A Guide to Home Buying in Orlando

By kev
At May 22, 2017

Central Florida offers Unbeatable Value and Unrivaled Family Fun!

There’s a clear appeal to owning an investment or secondary property in Orlando.
Weather, attractions, lakes, golf, and much more ensure that everyone has an incredible time in Central Florida.

Luxury Real Estate Near Disney


Choose a great Realtor that suits your family’s needs

  • Check out several realtors before you move ahead.
  • All realtors will promise the earth, few deliver.
  • Ask them LOTS of questions up front to gauge their responsiveness.  If they are swift and reliable, you are making good progress.
  • A good realtor won’t be too pushy, but will listen very carefully first, then offer the best advice.
  • A good realtor will not be impatient!
  • A bad realtor will quickly try to market their ‘current projects’ whether they are suitable for you or not.
  • If you don’t decide to use us, no problem!
  • You are free to choose whoever you want to find that dream home!

TotalOrlando Realty guides buyers and sellers throughout every inch of the process, to ensure that the deal runs smoothly, at the best possible price, with the fewest possible issues.
Like any big transaction or purchase, there’s a lot to consider, and we are your eyes and ears on the ground here in Florida.
Florida home owners almost always live out of state, or out of the country, making trustworthy local guidance, the most critical resource to buyers.

Some things to have ready before you begin your search!

  • Buyers should have ‘proof of funds’ at the ready.  This could be a bank statement or a mortgage offer.
  • Don’t worry if you need a bit of time for the proof of funds, you have until you make an actual offer.
  • Copies of tax records are important if financing is required.
  • Up to date passports and driver’s licenses family members (you may need to visit Orlando to view homes etc)

Some things that might surprise you about buying in Orlando

  • The process can be quick and straight forward
  • Mortgages are often available for non USA residents at fair rates (Generally up to 60% loan to value)
  • Homes can be placed into profitable rental programs while you aren’t using it (offset running costs & mortgage)
  • Generally speaking, only the area South or Southwest of Disney World is zoned for short term rental
  • Many home owners go on to own multiple, profitable properties here in Orlando.

Making Orlando your Permanent Home

  • Many US Residents make Central Florida their permanent home thanks to the year round warmth.
  • Orlando’s attractions work wonders to entice family members to visit you regularly!
  • Overseas buyers often yearn to become US residents at some point.  The place simply grows on you!
    We warned you!
  • Immigration is not easy, but it can be achieved.  We can chat with you to find out how to help find you a reliable immigration attorney.

Costs of Buying a Home

  • Title fees
  • Closing fees
  • Home owner Insurances
  • Furnishing packages may be required

Costs of Running a Home

  • AC always needs to run at background levels to remove humidity
  • HOA fees may be required, depending upon your community
  • Yard maintenance or Landscaping fees
  • Insurances
  • TV / Cable / Internet
  • Gas for pool heat

Top Tips For Homebuyers!

  • Pick a target budget from the outset
  • Consider an ‘absolute maximum’ to keep a realistic limit.
  • Create a list of ‘must haves’
  • Create a list of ‘nice to haves’
  • What does your family like to do at weekends and on evenings for fun?
  • Try to think of activities ‘beyond the theme parks!’
  • A good realtor can work magic with your lists and find the best home in the best communities!
  • Try to think of the possible future needs for the home (rental market, retirement etc)

Things to watch out for when buying a home in Orlando

  • Pushy Realtors are often looking after their interests, not yours!
    Good realtors are rare and invaluable.
  • Focus on the location that’s best for you, not just how far it is from A to B
  • Many of the best communities are close to Disney, but other great homes might only be 15-20 minutes away!
  • Decide of you ‘might’ want to offset costs in a vacation rental program.
    Areas are zoned for residential or short term rental.  There’s no going back if you buy in a residential area!
  • Residential areas offer the best schools and community spirit.
  • Ensure the area you choose has great stores, bars and restaurants nearby.
  • Don’t buy a tired old home unless you have an expertize in construction
  • If a home needs remodeling, ask your realtor to research reliable builders for you.
  • Understand the full cost of any remodel projects before you buy the home.  Always allow for a few % of inflation!
  • Visit the community at different times of day and night to understand the community fully.
    A good realtor will know the community or research this for you!
  • Try not to ‘pre-determine’ the outcome.  It’s so hard to change your shortlist if your heart was set on one place already.
  • Ask your realtor to show price trends and explain what’s hot and what’s not in that community or Central Florida in general.

When things don’t go to plan!

  • Things happen, and sometimes unexpectedly.
    Don’t be disheartened if you miss out on a home.
    Take a few days to think things through and refocus your efforts.
    Don’t rush into making an offer on another home!

Your Goal is to have the best possible home that can get and don’t settle for anything less!

  • A smart purchase will serve you and your family for many years to come!
  • Work with and question your realtor to be as sure as possible that you have bought the best available home that’s on the market.
  • If not, wait.  The market is buzzing and new opportunities will surface in time!

If you like this article, we might be the perfect realtor for you!


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