Lessons I Have Learned in Buying and Refinancing my Homes

By
Real Estate Agent with Solutions Real Estate CA DRE #01490977

Lessons Learned in Buying and Refinancing my Homes        

 

As a Carlsbad Realtor I have, for years, worked with many buyers and sellers (plus for 3 years back in Boston), and a good number of relocations here from out of the area or out of state. My wife and I have bought and sold 10 primary homes over the years, along with 2 vacation homes on Cape Cod (the one above is our first, in Brewster, MA) and a business condo, so I’ve learned a few lessons and thought I would share them about how to buy a home or how to sell a home.

 

packing to moveEMOTIONS RUN HIGH WHEN BUYING AND SELLING

Having been through multiple purchases and sales, 2 here in California, I truly understand what it’s like to go through the process of buying and selling. Just because I do this for a living doesn’t mean I’m immune to all the emotions and stress that come with selling your home and buying another; I bought and sold 6 homes even before I became licensed so I gained some pretty good practical knowledge as a buyer and seller, and had a few tough learning experiences that have help me in other purchase, but also can benefit you.

 

I’ve been in your shoes multiple times, including buying and selling simultaneously as well as going through 4 major relocations (the latest from Boston to California). It’s tough, emotional, and very time consuming. Even when you know what to expect, as I do, there is still lots of anxiety and stress, especially when things don’t go the way you expect, which sadly is not unusual. That said, there are plenty of wonderful and exciting moments when buying a home.

 

 

delaysBUYING AND SELLING IS SORTA LIKE FLYING

When you fly these days you know there could be a delay before you take off, but you don’t know sometimes until the last minute nor how long a delay it will be.

 

You can also expect there will be some turbulence, but you don’t know exactly when it will hit or how long it will last, even if the pilot tells you to expect it (but it’s nice to know it’s coming). Not knowing causes some anxiety, and then when it happens, wow, do those emotions take off –especially with delays. Plus there is plenty of frustration because you can’t control it.

 

As in real estate, one delay can lead to another problem. You should expect that things can happen, mistakes may be made, and unexpected delays may pop up. You won’t like it when they do, but at least you won’t be staring through rose-colored glasses expecting perfection. Having someone you trust at your side – your lender, your agent – can help prepare for problems and weather any turbulence.

 

VERIFY, VERIFY, AND VERIFY

It’s nice to trust but there are definitely things that should be verified during your due diligence. After all it can significantly affect you, either as a buyer or seller, if you don’t, in particular those matters which are important. When we bought our first home in CA the seller, and agent, stated that there was a gas line in the kitchen for the stove (which was electric) when asked.

 

 

We neglected to verify this when we toured the home and did not attend the inspection since we were back in Boston and didn’t request someone else check on our behalf.  It was a stupid mistake and we never should have trusted. We ordered a new gas stove and when they came to install, guess what? No gas line. It cost $1500 to have a new one installed from the gas line in the garage (up through the attic and down the kitchen wall). There are all sorts of things to verify during a transaction and making assumptions rather than verifying can hurt!

 

ASK LOTS OF QUESTIONS, AND THEN ASK SOME MORE

There’s a ton of stuff to know, and even after buying and selling a lot of homes in 4 states, and working with buyers and sellers for 14 years I keep learning more every day. Even with all I know and have seen, there are always new problems and issues that come up that are new to me, both in my own personal real estate dealings and when helping my clients.

 

I’ve learned you just can’t ask too many questions, and in real estate I don’t believe ignorance is bliss, as they say. Whoever said that neer bought or sold their home!

 

 

BE PROMPT WITH PAPERWORK AND RESPONDING TO QUESTIONS

There are plenty of deadlines in real estate contracts, and I’ve learned, both in my own purchases and sales and working with clients, that you just can’t ignore these deadlines.

 

And getting paperwork done promptly not only gets it off YOUR back but helps keep the process moving. This is especially important with mortgages which can require a ton of paperwork – you may be surprised if you haven’t gotten a loan recently how much documentation you may need to provide.

 

SOMETIMES IT PAYS TO BE A NAG

That’s not intended to sound rude or negative, but whether you refer to it as being a squeaky wheel, a nag, or just being persistent, sometimes you have just to do it. When you aren’t getting the information you need, have to have an answer to an important question, or someone said they would follow-up or do this or that but didn’t, it’s time for that phone call, and a follow-up email.

 

 

People get busy, forget, run into their own delays, or may not be the best communicators, but as the buyer or seller you have a vested interest in keeping things moving along and meeting those deadlines. No need to be rude, but following up with a reminder, and a request for the information or answer is in your best interest as the buyer or seller.

 

 

Sunset - the end goalKEEP YOUR OVERALL GOAL IN MIND

I’ve learned over the years…most of the time...to not get bogged down in a transaction and to keep focused on what the end goal is, buying or selling the house so you can move on with your life. I’ve had plenty of low offers, difficult people or agents on the other side, petty situations that blew up, delays that made no sense and could have been prevented, mistakes in paperwork, and moments when I simply wanted to say “forget it”...there’s those emotions again!

 

There are times it’s easy to find it hard to move past certain issues but the overall goal, to move with you life, whatever that means, puts the little things in perspective and can allow things to move forward.

 

I’d love to put my practical, personal and business experience to work for you AND help you with any turbulence that might come along if you are buying and selling in Carlsbad or elsewhere in the North San Diego County area.

 

Why not give me a call at (760) 840-1360 so I can answer any questions you might have?

close

Re-Blogged 1 time:

Re-Blogged By Re-Blogged At
  1. Gabe Sanders 11/05/2016 04:58 PM
Topic:
Home Buying
Location:
California San Diego County Carlsbad
Groups:
CALIFORNIA REAL ESTATE
Buyer Information - What Buyers Need to Know in Today's Market
Advice for Sellers
Advice for Buyers
Tags:
how to sell a home
how to buy a home
home selling tips and advice
home buying tips and advice
carlsbad real estate market
jeff dowler crs

Post a Comment
Spam prevention
Spam prevention
Show All Comments
Ambassador
3,987,780
Jeff Dowler, CRS
Solutions Real Estate - Carlsbad, CA
The Southern California Relocation Dude

Thanks William Feela 

I've learned a few things along the way, with my own buys and sells but also working with a lot of clients, and enjoy sharing that. But there is always something new to learn!

Jeff

Oct 28, 2016 01:35 PM #3
Rainmaker
3,204,854
Endre Barath, Jr.
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices - Beverly Hills, CA
Realtor - Los Angeles Home Sales 310.486.1002

Jeff agreed we learn a lot in our own experiences, I have bought and sold more than a handful of my own homes.... it changes the precept ion from when you are representing buyers and sellers... and in the long run it helps you to explain to them that you know how they feel you have been there, Endre

Oct 28, 2016 02:45 PM #4
Rainmaker
3,254,166
Sally K. & David L. Hanson
EXP Realty 414-525-0563 - Brookfield, WI
WI Realtors - Luxury - Divorce

Your own experience is the very best teacher...lessons vary with each home.

Oct 28, 2016 08:18 PM #5
Rainmaker
2,915,532
James Dray
Fathom Realty - Bentonville, AR
Exceptional Agents, Outstanding Results

Good morning Jeff.  I agree verify what you are told. There are no bad questions, as I enjoy a seller/buyer who has a lot of questions to be answered.

Oct 28, 2016 08:29 PM #6
Rainmaker
4,797,311
Gabe Sanders
Real Estate of Florida specializing in Martin County Residential Homes, Condos and Land Sales - Stuart, FL
Stuart Florida Real Estate

Good morning Jeff.  Great advice for would be investors.  I especially like your comment about asking questions.

Oct 28, 2016 08:58 PM #7
Rainmaker
1,920,615
Grant Schneider
Performance Development Strategies - Armonk, NY
Your Coach Helping You Create Successful Outcomes

Good Morning Jeff - a very well written post that really captures the roller coaster ride of a home transaction.  It is a project and a project needs to be managed.

Oct 28, 2016 08:59 PM #8
Rainmaker
1,218,725
Sheri Sperry - MCNE®
Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage - Sedona, AZ
(928) 274-7355 ~ YOUR Solutions REALTOR®

Hi Jeff Dowler - Lots of good lessons here.  Good analogy with flying (delays and turbulence) and the gas stove.  We have bought and sold 7 homes over the years and I thought I was pretty savvy until I became a Realtor®.  It is amazing what you learn on the job. Buyers and sellers alike need our experience, life lessons and help. 

Oct 29, 2016 12:31 AM #9
Rainmaker
707,279
Bill Roberts
Brooks and Dunphy Real Estate - Oceanside, CA
"Baby Boomer" Retirement Planner

Well Jeff Dowler You make a good case foe the empathy that you have with your clients.

See you Monday.

Bill Roberts

Oct 29, 2016 12:56 AM #10
Rainmaker
3,335,071
Michael Jacobs
Pasadena, CA
Los Angeles Pasadena 818.516.4393

Hi Jeff -- you're absolutely right .   As your well-written post shows the combination of personal experience along with our on-the-job-training can create the ideal package to better assist our clients.  

Oct 29, 2016 01:20 AM #11
Rainmaker
3,168,589
Will Hamm
Hamm Homes - Aurora, CO
"Where There's a Will, There's a Way!"

Hello Jeff Dowler,  Emotions do run high and this is such a great bog that more people should be commenting on it.

 

Oct 29, 2016 01:28 AM #12
Rainmaker
2,791,010
Kathleen Daniels
KD Realty - 408.972.1822 - San Jose, CA
San Jose Homes for Sale-Probate & Trust Specialist

Jeff,  It helps me when I know the person I have hired "gets it" - that they have been there and can relate to what I am going through.  Your experience and empathy goes a very long way!

Oct 29, 2016 02:59 AM #13
Rainmaker
2,189,769
Elizabeth Weintraub Sacramento Realtor Top 1%
RE/MAX Gold - Sacramento, CA
Put 40 years of experience to work for you

It would have been $400 for that gas line if you had a crawl space, LOL. I've been there, too, buying, fixing up and selling a bunch of homes. Just closed on a second home in Hawaii in January. When the shoe is on the other foot, you behave just like a buyer. I actually heard the words come out of my mouth when I knew better: do you think they'll take less? Funny the stuff we pick up.

Oct 29, 2016 04:49 AM #14
Ambassador
3,987,780
Jeff Dowler, CRS
Solutions Real Estate - Carlsbad, CA
The Southern California Relocation Dude

Kathy Streib 

Oh those little things can really bog us down when buying or selling. It's happened to me personally, and I see it often with clients. I think having varied practical and personal experience is a big help with being more empathetic with our buyers and sellers.

Jeff

Oct 30, 2016 05:30 AM #15
Ambassador
3,987,780
Jeff Dowler, CRS
Solutions Real Estate - Carlsbad, CA
The Southern California Relocation Dude

Endre Barath, Jr. That's all so true.

I don't get into personal discussions of what I have done specifically but it sure helps with understanding their perspective and what they might be feeling when problems arise or it all feels overwhelming.

Jeff

Oct 30, 2016 05:32 AM #16
Ambassador
3,987,780
Jeff Dowler, CRS
Solutions Real Estate - Carlsbad, CA
The Southern California Relocation Dude

Sally K. & David L. Hanson  - experience IS a terrific teacher, the bad ones in particular!

James Dray  - agreed. I really like the educating part of our role - the more questions the better. I am always asking if buyers or sellers have other questions.

Jeff

Oct 30, 2016 05:34 AM #17
Ambassador
3,987,780
Jeff Dowler, CRS
Solutions Real Estate - Carlsbad, CA
The Southern California Relocation Dude

Thanks Gabe Sanders  - questions are essential!

Grant Schneider  - I think that's a really good way to think about it. There are many pieces to the puzle that have to happen, with dues dates, and people who are responsible. And a certain order of things, too.

Jeff

Oct 30, 2016 05:36 AM #18
Ambassador
3,987,780
Jeff Dowler, CRS
Solutions Real Estate - Carlsbad, CA
The Southern California Relocation Dude

Sheri Sperry - MCNE®  - practical experience and lessons are a good thing. And you're right, we learn an awful lot working as a Realtor given all the situations we are exposed to. There is always something new!

Thanks Bill Roberts . Look forward to seeing you tomorrow at the meet-up!

Jeff

Oct 30, 2016 05:44 AM #19
Ambassador
3,987,780
Jeff Dowler, CRS
Solutions Real Estate - Carlsbad, CA
The Southern California Relocation Dude

Thanks so much Michael Jacobs  - I think the combination can definitely be a benefit to our buyers and sellers, depending on how we use and share the information.

Jeff

Oct 30, 2016 05:52 AM #20
Ambassador
3,987,780
Jeff Dowler, CRS
Solutions Real Estate - Carlsbad, CA
The Southern California Relocation Dude

Thanks for the compliment Will Hamm 

Agreed Kathleen Daniels . Experience AND empathy make a terrific combination for success.

Jeff

Oct 30, 2016 05:54 AM #21
Ambassador
3,314,897
Debe Maxwell, CRS
www.iCharlotteHomes.com | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310 - Charlotte, NC
Charlotte Homes for Sale - Charlotte Neighborhoods

Hi Jeff!  I agree - ignorance is not bliss when buying a home!  I try to think of every question a buyer will have and get as much Due Diligence done up-front to save incidents like you experienced.  And, being the squeaky wheel - well, that's the sign of a great agent!  Enjoy your Sunday, Jeff Dowler!

Nov 05, 2016 02:08 PM #22
Post a Comment
Spam prevention
Show All Comments

What's the reason you're reporting this blog entry?

Are you sure you want to report this blog entry as spam?

Ambassador
3,987,780

Jeff Dowler, CRS

The Southern California Relocation Dude
What's my Carlsbad CA Area Home Worth??
*
*
*
*
Spam prevention

Additional Information