So you are home shopping? Open houses are starting to get busy and buyers are out there. Their questions and thoughts are always interesting. Here are a few tips I learned along the way:
If you like the home, look at at at least one more time before putting in an offer. If you think the house will go the same day and you have an agent who is not with you, call the agent to meet you there. Often a second look will give you a better feel for the house. You will notice things you did not the first time and will better enable you to make an offer.
Ask the agent who is representing you to do a market analysis. If you have been looking for awhile, you probably have a good idea of the prices in the neighborhood. I met someone the other day who was putting in an offer and the agent never showed him what comparable homes had sold for in that area. Overpaying hurts you and so does low-balling. You don't want to pay more than a home is worth and you want it to appraise. Low-balling insults the seller and if you really like the home, they may choose not to work with you.
If you are buying a resale, remember it is not new construction and it is unfair to compare it to a brand new home. It may need some cosmetic work and that is why you will pay less than a brand new home. If you get a "great deal" remember that the seller may not have any other available cash for repairs so consider that in your offer.
Move things along as quickly as you can. Get your inspections done within 10 days so you know if there are issues. Be reasonable and follow the contract. If you have an attorney, consult him or her. Try to keep emotion out of it. Often times the seller has no idea that an issue exists and most sellers (not all but most) want to be reasonable and settle the problem so they can close.
You may not close on the date written in the contract. Most buyers close that week but not necessarily that day. The date is set when the bank gives a "clear to close" and the realtor and attorney cannot control that. Your job is to get everything to the bank that they require and continue to ask if they need anything else. The bank did a credit report and may do one more before closing so hold off on buying furniture, cars..anything that will affect your credit score The appraisal also has to be done and title ordered and reviewed. Staying on top of your loan is really important.
Finally, don't tell your friends, co-workers, neighbors, relatives what you are paying. Everyone always believes you could have done better. You were the one looking. You saw enough homes. You had a good realtor and you saw what comparable homes sold for in that area. So stop looking; end the automatic emails and start getting excited about moving into your new home! Good luck...the rates are great and the inventory is starting to build.
Coldwell Banker Prime Properties