Mistakes to Avoid when Buying a Home

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So you’ve finally found your “it” home – the one you’ve been searching for that you absolutely must have! In order to put your best foot forward and to make sure you present a strong enough offer to secure your dream home, you may want to take the following into consideration:

1. Make sure you know and understand the market. If, for example, it’s a “seller’s” market, that typically means that the housing inventory is low and that homes are in high-demand. Many times in a seller’s market, a seller will receive multiple offers and a “bidding war” will erupt. When this is the case, having the mindset that you are going to get the home for a steal or that you will start by offering less than the asking price (knowing that you will be countered) may not be the best strategy…and, in all honesty, may not even get you a counter offer from the seller. This is one of the reasons having an experienced real estate representative can be so helpful. If you’re working with a savvy agent, he/she should contact the seller’s agent (known as the listing agent) to inquire about the home, about how many offers have already been received, about the seller’s motivation, etc. so that you know exactly where you need to be in order to secure the home you want.

2. Know your financial situation. Although this may sound obvious, it isn’t always the case. For example, let’s say you’ve spoken with your lender, told him/her where you’d be most comfortable and where you’d like your monthly payments to be. After chatting with you and reviewing your documents, he/she pre-approves you for a purchase price of $500,000. The seller of the home you’re bidding on counters you for $525,000 so you believe you’re stuck and can’t go any higher. It may very well be the case that your lender can pre-approve you for the $525,000 purchase price but did not based on your previously discussed “comfort” level. The difference in price may be minimal when spread out over the life of the loan and could be the difference between getting the home and losing the home. This is why we say make sure you know your entire financial situation and, more importantly, make sure you’re working with a lender you can count on and trust! We have several lenders we regularly recommend, so please feel free to contact me if you’d like any referrals.

3. Believe me when I say there is no such thing as a perfect house – there is only a perfect house FOR YOU. I say this because you will most likely conduct at least one physical inspection of the home. Home inspectors are trained to review and record everything that is (or could potentially be) wrong with the home…and can tell you their findings in a way that would lead you to believe that the home you are trying to purchase is a disaster which isn’t necessarily the case. Again, if you’re working with an agent and an inspector that you trust, they can help you understand what items are safety concerns, which are simply recommended “fixes” and which you can readily ignore. Something will ALWAYS turn up at an inspection – it’s just a matter of how big or small the issue(s).

If you’d like to discuss these or any other real estate issues, remember, I’m always happy to help! Please contact me today to schedule a zero-obligation free consultation.