can often negotiate a lower sale price by employing a buyer broker
who works for you not the seller. If the buyer broker or the broker's
firm also lists properties, there may be a conflict of interest,
so ask them to tell you if they are showing you a property that
they have listed.
Do not purchase
any house until it has been examined by a home inspector that
a Place to Live
limit your rental housing search to classified ads or referrals
from friends and acquaintances. Select buildings where you would
like to live and contact their building manager or owner to see
if anything is available.
signing a lease probably obligates you to make all monthly payments
for the term of the agreement.
repairs often cost thousands of dollars and are the subject of
frequent complaints. Select from among several well established,
licensed contractors who have submitted written, fixed-price bids
for the work.
Do not sign
any contract that requires full payment before satisfactory completion
of the work.
Consumer Reports, available in most public libraries, for information
about specific brands and how to evaluate them, including energy
use. There are often great price and quality differences among
selected a brand, check the phone book to learn what stores carry
this brand, then call at least four of these stores for the prices
of specific models. After each store has given you a quote, ask
if that's the lowest price they can offer you. This comparison
shopping can save you as much as $100 or more.