Once those you’ve secured the right agent and prepared your financials - it’s time to start shopping!Explore
If you can, take a drive around the neighborhoods and communities that interest you to get a feel for the area. You can look online at listings as well. If you’ve found a property you like, contact your agent and they can schedule a time to visit the home. When looking at properties, ask your agent about the long-term resale value of the properties being considered.Narrow Your Search
Talk with your agent about your desired property and establish criteria together. How many bedrooms and baths would you like? Do you want a yard? Is there a specific school district you’d like the property to be zoned in? There are many factors to consider, so communicating them will help your real estate agent focus on the right potential properties.It's Time to Buy
Your real estate agent’s negotiating skills will be important for handling the offer process. Once you’ve found the property you want to purchase, it’s time to make an offer. Your real estate professional will do all the necessary analysis to help you create an advantageous offer. A good agent will examine the potential costs and expenses associated with the property.
During the negotiation process, your agent will draft the purchase agreement. Home warranty, escrow arrangements, and title will be included in the offer. Your agent will advise you of all protective contingencies, local regulations, and customary practices as well. Remember, your real estate professional will advise and notify you of important information, but it is ultimately your decision as to the terms and exact price you wish to offer.
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Tips For Buying
Don’t Max Out Your Budget
Just because you’ve been approved for a max amount, doesn't mean you should spend it all on the home's sale price. You will want to set some of that aside for closing costs, taxes and potential home repairs or remodeling.
Get to Know the Area
Make sure the neighborhood works for you and your family - are you close to schools and is shopping conveniently located?
Don’t Skip the Home Inspection
Inspections are worth their weight in gold and will draw attention to problems you may not otherwise see, giving you peace of mind and letting you make more informed decisions about your purchase.
Getting pre-approved by a lender lets the seller know you are serious and ready to purchase a home and that you are not just window shopping.
Know what you can live with and what you cannot live without and also those things that can be taken care of with a simple remodel. If you need a 4 bedroom home, don't buy one with 2 that requires a massive addition which can break your budget.Look at the Age of Appliances and Other Systems
Appliances are some of the most expensive portions of the home and you should pay particular attention to their age and whether they have required service. Other systems to have inspected are your HVAC, hot water heater, and your septic & well, if applicable. You may be able to get the seller to add a home warranty when buying.Check For HOA Requirements
Most neighborhoods have HOAs that govern what you can and can't do - be sure you know what the rules are for your neighborhood.