7 Tips to Make Buying a Home Easier
Whether you are just starting your search to buy a home or you're at the point whether you're wondering if you'll ever find the right one, here are 7 Tips to Make Buying a Home Easier. These tips are especially critical to buying in a Sellers' Market where you'll need to act quickly and don't want to miss an opportunity. They'll also help to reduce the amount of time you spend searching for a home in any market.
1. Evaluate the Home Realistically
When you view a property in person look beyond the sellers' furnishings and decor. Don't rush through the house. Stand in each room and look around at it carefully. Think about where you would place your furniture. Consider how you will use each room. Will some of them be multi-functional? Do they provide enough storage for the items you would like to keep in that room?
2. Consider Low Cost Changes To Adapt the Style
New lighting, paint, replacing carpeting and window treatments are relatively inexpensive ways to change the "look" of a room.
Window treatments add style, color and privacy or they can let natural light into a room to brighten it. Paint colors affect the "mood" and can make a room feel bigger and the ceiling higher, or smaller and cozier. Recessed lighting, good floor and table lamps make a huge difference in how a room will feel.
3. Choose a REALTOR® Who Knows Your Local Market
You are relying on your REALTOR® to help you understand the local real estate market, especially the market value of the homes you like. The agent doesn't need an office in the town, but she does need to focus on staying up-to-date on the real estate trends and sales happening in that town. It puts you at a disadvantage when your agent cannot knowledgeably advise you about your offer price.
4. Have Your REALTOR® Go to Open Houses With You
In Sellers' Markets houses often get multiple offers and sell very quickly. If that is the case with the house you are considering, it isn't likely that there will be time for your agent to go back later to see the house. Without having been in the house, your agent is limited in understanding a market value offer price. This is another reason why an agent who works locally is important. She may have already seen the house on a "broker's tour" before it came on the market.
4. Don't Take It Personally
It's stressful to sell and buy a home. We never know what factors are impacting someone's life. Negotiations are conducted by the two agents who represent the requests and the best interests of their clients. Try not to read anything negative into responses from the other party. This is a business transaction. Both parties are working to try to achieve a result that feels reasonable and successful for their goals.
5. Make the Decision To Buy A Home Based on Your Own Interests, Style and Budget
This may be the largest financial investment of your lives but you have to make the decision to purchase a home based on your own evaluations. It's exciting for family members and friends to help you shop for a home. As much as you love and respect these important people, what appeals to them isn't necessarily what appeals to you. Unless they are an experienced, licensed contractor or local REALTOR® do not let their opinions about the systems, structure, stability or price of the home affect your decision to move ahead. Your agent will help you understand the market value and ultimately, your home inspector, will help you evaluate the condition of the house.
6. Get Legal Representation
A REALTOR® cannot give you legal advice unless she is also an attorney. An experienced real estate attorney is just as important as an experienced REALTOR®. You'll want an attorney with specific residential real estate experience...not a personal injury or divorce attorney. Being licensed to practice law does not mean the person is qualified to represent your best interests as you buy a house. An attorney who is not experienced in real estate may slow down or even derail the transaction.
7. Find a Knowledgeable Lender
Ask about all of the mortgage "products" for which you qualify. There may be special lending programs for your profession.
Not every property will meet the lenders' requirements for a conventional mortgage. If you are thinking of buying a "fixer upper" talk to your lender ahead of time. Different mortgage products will allow different down payment amounts.
Laws have improved the way lenders have to explain the borrowing process to you. Don't hesitate to ask questions about fees, points, interest rates and mortgage insurance. Once you apply for a mortgage, continue to pay your bills on time and don't increase your credit card debt during the lender's review process.
If you are thinking of Selling or Buying a Home in Norfolk County, MA give me a call at 781-883-3764 so we can talk about your real estate goals.