Mistakes Buyers Make When Buying a Home -
If you're looking to buy a home, you'll probably start looking online first according to this outlook from the Economist. And that trend continues to rise as more buyers search online first before contacting a real estate agent. Seeing all the photos of homes can become addictive, but photos can be deceiving, eliminating such things as location.
The good news is that after buyers find a home online they do consult with a real estate agent. Using a real estate agent or REALTOR® means you have someone representing your interests and not the home sellers'. These are some of the biggest Mistakes Buyers Make When Buying a Home.
Mistake #1 - Home buyers buy a home through the listing agent at an open house. Remember that an agent holding an open house represents the seller. The agent will work on behalf of the seller to get the highest price and terms to benefit the seller, not the buyer.
Mistake #2 - Starting the process without being pre-approved for a mortgage. Even if you find the right house, you can't purchase it as you aren't pre-approved for a mortgage. Times have changed and being pre-approved is a must in today's buying frenzy of a real estate market. After all, how do you know how much you can afford when looking at homes online?
Mistake #3 - Interviewing agents to find the right agent for you. Buyers often use the first realtor they meet versus interviewing them as to experience, length of time in the field, and areas of expertise to learn an agent's strengths. Determine if you actually "like" them. You're going to be working with them for a few months in the process so it's best to get along!
Mistake #4 - Not knowing what you want in a home. If you have never owned a home, this might seem difficult as you have nothing to compare. So think about your parents' home or a friends home. What do you like about their homes? What do you desire in a home? How many bedrooms do you need? Garage spaces? What places would you prefer to be close to? Do you need public transportation?
Mistake #5 - Buying a home through a builder without knowing their building history. Investigate builder reputation as to past lawsuits, how many homes they build, and check the Better Business Bureau for past issues. Search online for other communities where they build to compare home sizes and prices.
Mistake #6 - Check out the health of the Homeowners Association for the community. Find out when the last reserve study was performed and ask for a copy. A reserve study examines the account balances regarding long term repairs and enhancements to the community. Learn if there are expected assessments. Take note of the condition of the grounds and the parking lot. Those might be indicators of expenses in the near future to homeowners.
Mistake #7 - Not getting a home inspection or performing due diligence. A thorough inspection is a must when determining if a home is a good purchase. Examine the age of components, ie water heater, HVAC, appliances. If they don't need replacing now, learn about how long those will last.
Mistake #8 - Not interviewing mortgage brokers. Examine the differences between a mortgage banker, a mortgage broker and one of the bigger banks to determine the best rate and any possible down payment programs. Down payment assistance programs might help you use your funds toward improvements or new items after you close on your new home. Otherwise, learn abotu how much you'll need for closing costs.
Hopefully with these tips, you'll make a good decision and avoid Mistakes Buyers make When Buying a Home. And when you're selecting a real estate agent, contact me for homes in Arizona. I provide value added service for all my clients!