When you are preparing to buy, there are several steps that each buyer should consider.
- Determine today what you can pay for anyplace, anywhere.
- When you find a match to the property you want, understand what you are willing to pay for that house/condo. This can be a less than the maximum you can afford. For example, let's say the most money you can pay for anything is $320,000. If the price is $365,000 you can't afford it. If the price is $250,000 but it needs $60,000 of work you can offer it.
- Before placing an offer. Know where you want to start and where you can end up.
- All number crunching should be done now. They are what they are. If your salary changes than adjust the numbers.
- Understand that the market has been active at $350,000 and under and most of the "deals" are gone. Think 3% to 5% under asking price.
- When you find what you want you must act decisively and quickly. If you have the plan in place before you make the offer, you can be anywhere and you and your Realtor can execute the plan. Other buyers are have already determined their plan and will act quickly and decisively, thus beating you out.
- When you complete your plan, review it with a financial person of your choice and incorporate any appropriate suggestions. This is a sanity check to make sure you are on the right track. This is another why to get pre-approved.
- The buyer who is prepared has the best chance to succeed.