Yes, interest rates for mortgages are still as low as they could possible get. And yes, the prices of houses are still low enough to be very interesting. This does not, however, mean that any home is bargain waiting to be snapped up. The market currently favors the buyer. However, you must make sure that you make careful considerations before you buy. There are a some red flags that you need to be aware of that could tell you that a purchase may not be the best way forward. These problems are not always significant enough to tell you not to buy, but sometimes they are. There are two factors in particular to be aware of.
First of all, check the neighborhood. This is one of the most important things you will do. Find out whether the community is going through growth, or whether it is declining. Seeing a lot of homes in foreclosure and boarded up businesses is a sure sign of trouble. Do also come back to the neighborhood on different days and at different times. This will also give you an idea of what traffic is like at different points. Do also come at least once at night, so you can see whether the streets are safe and quiet at night or not. Speak to the police and ask for statistics on local crimes.
Next, make sure you know if the property has been foreclosed on or is going through a short sale. Although it is true that these are the cheapest properties, they are also often in poor condition and in bad neighborhoods.
At the end of the day, only you can decide whether or not you should purchase a property. Also, homes with problems are often available at much cheaper prices. However, you must also be very careful that you aren’t buying into a money pit, or a property that you will never be able to sell again. Homes, whether purchased as an investment or not, are places for people to live in, which means they have to be inhabitable. Naturally, it is vital that you also check the property itself, but don’t forget just how important the neighborhood actually is. In terms of the condition of the property, you can simply ask a property inspector to come and check it out, after all. In terms of checking out a neighborhood, there is no data available to do this right, only your own personal feelings.