Yes I am ready to buy, and I have no time to figure it out.
How does anyone make a major home purchase when life is already so demanding with job, and family? If your time is limited this article may help you find some easy ways to
handle the overwhelm, and help you move forward on achieving your real estate goals.
As a realtor I like to ask my clients a few questions before we start touring homes. These questions help clients gain clarity as well as define your criteria.
One: What are your long term goals? How many years do you see yourself in your new home? When are you looking to move?
Two: What are some of the features you must have? What do you love about your current home? What are some of the features you do not like?
Three: How much are you pre approved for in a loan? Pre approved meaning you
have contacted a lender and have gone through the underwriting process and have a loan
amount you are approved for. If you have not started this most agents will recommend this step
before they show you homes. Every realtor has lenders they can refer to you. That said I recommend touring open houses on weekends to get familiar with home prices and neighborhoods.
You might ask why these question are important? Most first time home buyers do not understand real estate home ownership is an investment has the potential to increase in value in a relatively short time, depending on the market and the economy. If a buyer is planning to raise a family my search will include good schools, parks, easy access to the community park and rec. center, in neighborhoods that will hold their home value.
If a couple is looking for a property for 2 or 3 years I will be looking
for homes under valued so that with minor repairs it will appreciate and offer a higher ROI. Of course we do not know where the economy or interest rates will go but as a realtor I watch trends and attend lectures with top economist, in our industry, to stay on top of these pertinent issues.
When I purchased my first home, my first husband and I did not have much
money and, although our dreams were big, we were limited by our budget.
We found a house that had everything I wanted on a very small scale and was
a cosmetic fixer. I knew when I saw it, even with 2 families living under the same
roof, and curtains that shut the light out, I would make the home
into a jewel, and I would love it for a long time.
Sometimes you have to look past the sellers furniture and asthetic to see
the jewel in the rough. Often you will find most of everything you hoped
but one or two items may not come with the house.
Fast forward 15 years, second husband, and son in college:
My husband and I recently purchased a home in Marin, CA. We were
living in The Silicon Valley area, and although it was a year earlier than planned, we
found our perfect home and jumped on it. It happened so fast I did not have the
time to ask some important questions.
Although it was perfect we still gave up some items on our "must have" list.
Our dream house was on three acres, with views of hills, open floor plan, as we love to entertain, high ceilings, a studio with its own entry from the garden, and a pool.
We were hoping for a great downtown where we could go out to date night dinners, wine bars, do yoga, and some great cafes as we often work from home. We ended up with most of what we wanted. The urban downtown was one thing we did not get. Its been a year of remodeling but we are super happy with our move and the downtown is growing on us.
If there was one thing I would recommend to buyers it would
be to find the right realtor, who listens and then has the time, and available to take you to homes that fit your needs and your dreams. It is ok to ask realtors when interviewing how many clients on average they work with? This information will help you to know if they have the time to spend on finding you homes to tour. Most clients need to do their part as well and communicate with their realtor if they are getting cold feet or have issues with the homes they are touring and do not feel their realtor is showing them their preferred style or neighborhood. Good realtors are there to help clients move through obstacles. The synergy of your relationship with your realtor is critical to your move.
Lastly you want to know your realtor has the tenacity to advocate for you when negotiating on price and contingencies. Some realtors are so busy trying to close escrow they rush through reading the inspections and asking questions on potential costly repairs. These details can leave new homeowners with unnecessary expenses. Most realtors will recommend a first year home warranty. I recommend researching the ratings on the insurance company and make sure you know what the warranty covers That final step on home warranty is so important as it is the first thing you will interact with if anything breaks down once you are moved in.
The process is a journey from start to finish but with the right team you absolutely will attract the perfect home!
And we all know home is where the heart is!!