There are at least 7 things you must do to win in the home buying process. Winning means getting a fair deal and being satisfied with your purchase. These 7 things should happen after you receive your pre-approval letter.
- Work with a reputable and referred real estate agent. You don’t want to just work with the seller’s agent to save the seller money. You need an experienced pro that keeps your best interests at heart, knows local property values, and can help in the negotiation process. Since the seller pays realtor’s costs, it makes sense to use a pro.
- Create a wish list. Separate your wish list into 2 categories “Needs” and “Wants.” This will help you prioritize what you really should have in your first home and knowing what you could live without if you have to. This will make it easier to eliminate homes or narrow your search to homes that will suit your needs better.
- Expand your location search. While you may have your favorite target neighborhoods or school districts to consider, expanding your search can open many opportunities for a bigger property, a safer neighborhood, a less expensive alternative, or other desirable features.
- Visit the property multiple times. Homes can look different at different times of the day. Higher traffic on the streets, increased surrounding noise, and other issues may happen at different times of the day that may dramatically affect your lifestyle. Make sure you would like to live there at all times of the day.
- Make an attractive offer. Don’t kill your chances of getting that perfect fit home by low balling an offer or being difficult about a few thousand dollars. Over a 30 year loan period, a few thousand dollars is literally a handful of dollars more per month. Instead, make a fair offer for the property. Your realtor can help you. A fair offer coupled with a pre-approval letter will dramatically improve your chances of getting the seller to accept your offer.
- Select a reputable home inspector. You will see this tip repeated in other videos and content on our website. You must pay for an inspection to protect yourself from buying a home with structural hazards and expensive repairs. In case your seller is unwilling to pay for needed repairs, you will want an escape clause in your initial agreement that will allow you to back out of the deal. Your real estate agent can help you with this.
- Lock in Your Rate ASAP. Once you have selected your home, lock in your rate. You can lock in your rate up to 5 days before your closing. Get the rate lock in writing with a reasonable expiration date, one that won’t expire before that closing. Your mortgage broker will work closely with you on this one.
Doing these 7 things will ensure you are making a reasoned choice in the home you choose. They will also help you and your offer be attractive to the seller. And finally, they will help you protect yourself and minimize your costs.
We’d love to help get you into your first home, happy and satisfied.