September 15, 2009

House Tripping

If you are looking for a property to buy, and you already have an idea where you want it, the next thing you need to do is sign up for a tripping, and do a site inspection of the place and the area. A house tripping is free, and most of the time, they take care of your transportation and snacks.

The flyer above was given to me while I was walking in the mall. If I am interested in this property, I would call the agent and set-up a tripping schedule at my convenience. They sometimes do this on weekends and with a group.

During the tripping, you must observe the following:
1. Availability of public transportation to and from the site. Even if you have a car, it is always a must to check how convenient it is to go and in and out of a development. Also, are tricycles owned by residents of the village or are these from outside?
2. How is the security of the place? Is the village secured? How do they accept visitors? Are the tricycle drivers required to leave their IDs?
3. Are there available village amenities like a clubhouse,swimming pools, basketball courts, etc? Are these available to outsiders as well?
4. If you can, talk to residents for feedback on the garbage collection, safety and security, ease of dealing with the developer on permits for improvements and other concerns, etc. because they can always give you honest feedback whether they are satisfied or not.
5. Look at the materials used at the house and the quality of workmanship.
6. Don't be shy to ask any question that comes to mind even if you are not yet decided on buying. You are not wasting their time, but asking a legitimate concern.

Another thing that is very important to remember during a house tripping is this: You don't have to pay a down payment or reservation fee right away. You must think about it first.

During one tripping, the sales agent who was with us was almost bouncing on her heels asking us to give a reservation fee right there and then, telling us that we will get a discount if we pay now. My husband and I just exchanged an incredulous look and told her we are still thinking about it and will call her once we have decided. Some people in the group paid a down payment, I think more out of a sense of obligation, rather than because they like the property.

So before you decide to buy a property, take time to do a house tripping and see for yourselves exactly what you are buying. It is better to take a look at a lot of properties first, than paying a down payment right away, then changing your mind after seeing another development. Remember that you are not required to pay anything unless you are really sure that that is the property you want. Just enjoy the house tripping until you have finally found "The One."

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