If you are in the market to buy an Orange County home you are not alone! Buyer demand is very high and inventory of available listings is low which means it may take some time to find and ultimately buy your dream home. Just how long could it take? A recent survey conducted by Harris Interactive indicates that 33% of people searching for a home have been searching for more than a year. The good news is that the remaining 67% found a home in less than 12 months.
As an Orange County Realtor, I am certainly seeing very similar buying experiences in our local market. The rebounding real estate market combined with low interest rates has created a buying frenzy. Couple this with the fact that we started the year with inventory levels down over 60% from the previous year and the challenge to buy has gotten much tougher. It is still a great time to buy with interest rates still very low and prices still well below their peak values.
Buyer Tips to Shorten Time to Buy:
· Mortgage Preapproval/Prequal – ensure you are preapproved for a mortgage before you start looking. You can’t make an offer unless you are preapproved or prequalified so get this in place as soon as possible.
· Partner with Your Realtor – this is not a market to go it alone – partner with the real estate agent of your choice who will put you in front of the right homes on the day they are listed. The best homes have offers in the first couple of days – by the time you see a listing on the internet and figure out how to view it will most likely be too late.
· Willingness to Compromise – you will simply not find the “perfect” home. Being willing to compromise if a home meets most of your needs is essential. No Pool? You can put one in. Outdated baths? Update them. If you can’t compromise you may very well fall into the 33% category that is searching for more than a year.
· Make Good Offers – make your offer with the understanding that there will most likely be multiple offers. In certain price ranges it is almost guaranteed that homes will receive multiple offers so make your best offer and limit contingencies as much as possible. Buying is extremely competitive and you need to stand out from the crowd. Your real estate agent will help structure the offer in a way that will help you compete and hopefully get acceptance.
· Once Accepted – congratulations! Complete your inspections and due diligence and remain professional and easy to work with at all times. In the current market there is a very good chance that sellers have backup offers that are a phone call away. Closing escrow is your focus and goal!
If you are looking to buy a home in Orange County I would welcome the opportunity to work with you. I am the Broker Owner of Ventana Coastal Properties and can be reached anytime at 949-500-0484 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org – I look forward to your call!