House Hunter Tips for Current Market

By
Real Estate Agent with Keller Williams Realty

In todays’ market, home buyers are becoming more creative with their offers to make it stand out to sellers.  This is due to increase number of homes sold causing home prices to rise.  This may be good news for non-sellers who are not in the housing market, but not great news for buyers with modest means.  Many buyers are turning to the new home market since there is a shortage of available resale houses.  Buyers with modest means are finding new home builders focusing on creating higher-priced housing which tends to shut out the lower-end buyers.  Based on the above events the home buying process is getting more challenging for many, therefore, the following home buying tips become important:

Do not waste time – Buyers need to be realistic about their needs and desires and realize properties for sale are in short supply.  If you are shopping for a bargain you may end up being frustrated, discouraged, and possibility wasting time.  

First offer – When there is a storage of houses on the market, buyers must be ready to make a quick offer when you see the house that meets your criteria.  One way to help yourself is have your realtor provide you immediate alerts and he talks to other real estate agents to get advance notice of new houses coming on the market.  It is important to be the first buyer to visit the house and make an offer.  This will give you an advantage.  Prior to this, be sure you are preapproved and have your financing secured and ready to move forward immediately.  Finally, keep your offer simple, and have no contingencies.

New house construction – Some new home builder’s contract contains an escalation clause.  This means if you are building a new home the builder has the right to charge an increase amount at closing for the home.  This can be due to builders’ increase cost they incurred during the building phase.  If this clause exists, make sure you are aware how it affects you financially.  

Multi-family home – Consider purchasing this type of home even though it may not be your first choice.  From a practical standpoint it may be more affordable and give you the opportunity to experience home ownership.  Also, you may find it is more affordable versus renting.  Multi-family complex many times are priced higher, but if you rent the remaining units, your monthly net experiences could be equal to or less than renting a single unit.  Look into this possibility, renting the other units may help you qualify for the mortgage.

Off-season buying – During the late fall and winter months the housing market tends to slow down.  During this period, it is a more favorable time to buy.  If you are buying new construction that is already completed, the best time to buy is at the end of the builders’ fiscal year.  They need to reduce their tax liability making it an advantage for buyers.

Beaten Path - Look for homes that are not on the popular path.  There are towns and communities that have a lower profile and offer more affordable housing.  You must be willing to go outside the box to get better deals.

Be first – It extremely important to be aggressive.  Being aggressive is a great asset when searching for your home.  What this means, you need to be the first to tour the house and make an offer.  Your agent must be working with you providing alerts to houses that come on the market.  In addition, you need to ask everyone if they know of house coming on the market.  Tools to use are Facebook, Twitter, and next-door, etc.

Do not give up – Properly prepare yourself prior to starting your home search.  This means getting yourself pre-approved.  Even with a smaller income you can buy yourself a home, but you must be honest with yourself about your capabilities. 

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