Real estate : Buying property is a marathon, not a sprint


Our real-estate expert Yannick Callens suggests that you take your time when it comes to property.

Summer is here and we want to be in the best shape possible. In order to achieve this result, it is necessary to be consistent and persevere, with taking up sports, for example.

Real estate is the same thing – it is a marathon and not a sprint, where consistency and perseverance are the key words.

I want to address common mistakes to help you ensure a successful investment in real estate.

The first mistake is not knowing yourself, not training and only listening to and believing what the majority of people say. You should listen to only those who have achieved your goal and who are successful in real estate. Many of these successful people like to share and will be happy to do so. Other people’s experience saves you time. Personally, that’s how I learned, from the mistakes of others.

Do not fall into emotional thinking, subjectively saying that a property is “interesting”. Stay objective and do your own calculations. Calculate all ancillary costs and make a ‘Worst Case’ estimate, if there is more work required than was expected, for example. Concerning expenses related to the purchase, after obtaining the property, there are often surprises. If you receive a quote, consider asking 5% or 10% more, from your bank.

Not calculating your profitability well and therefore having a property that is not self-financing is a common mistake. Take into account the annual fees (indexed cadastral income, insurance and your expenses) in your calculations.

REAL ESTATE You can negotiate concerning all plans, contractors, property prices, costs related to the purchase, rates, guarantees, suspension of payments. It is a completely human affair, you are not dealing with robots, and humans are emotional beings.

Do not forget the credit suspension clause! If you forget this clause, you will not be able to cancel the purchase if you cannot find enough financing.

Visit a professional entrepreneur/expert with a strategy and an objective, compare the offers of banks, know the market prices, the different properties and their prices. Check the co-ownership reports and the mandatory documents that the seller must provide (such as the PEB certificate, town planning, electricity).

Do test the rental demand of the sector in which you are purchasing, and do not use additional money to invest or buy cash.

Stay consistent and persistent on these points throughout your purchase – even if you do not achieve your goal immediately, you will ensure that you are travelling in the right direction. Since we cannot change the direction of the wind, we must learn to guide the sails. Aye-aye, Captain.