8 Steps for the Savvy Buyer
CHOOSE THE RIGHT REALTOR®
Finding the right REALTOR® for you is the first step to a successful home buying experience. Like any business relationship, a personal connection with your agent will go a long way to making your experience a positive one.
Choose an agent dedicated to serving your needs, not only before and during the sale, but after the deal closes as well.
GET PRE-APPROVED FOR A MORTGAGE
Determining your price range up front will make your buying experience much easier. A qualified lender will ask questions about income, assets, and debt to help understand what price range you should be looking in. A true pre-approval includes a rate guarantee- this will improve your negotiating power.
SEARCH LIKE THE PROS
Have you REALTOR® set up an automated MLS® search for you. With custom search criteria based on your needs and presented in a user-friendly format, you’ll also get updates on new listings and price changes at the same time as REALTORS® do.
THINK LONG TERM
The average homebuyer will live in the same house for 4-8 years. A lot can happen and change in that time. Make sure you are looking at properties that will fit your plans for the future.
SEPARATE YOUR “MUST-HAVES” FROM YOUR “WOULD-LIKES”
Home buying is a process of both elimination and selection. Your “must-haves” will easily narrow down your search to a short-list, and your “would-likes “will help you make a buying decision.
Be flexible with your list. As you look for your new home, you may find that what you thought was a “must-have” really belongs in the “would-like” column.
GATHER INFO FROM ALL AVAILABLE SOURCES
With the help of your REALTOR®, collect the property history from local government offices, strata management companies, and other service providers. Know the property before you put in an offer.
REALIZE WHAT YOU CAN AND CANNOT CHANGE
You can’t change the location of a home, and it can be expensive to change the layout of a house, but some things you don’t like about a property (such as carpet or paint) can be changed pretty easily.
DO YOUR DUE DILIGENCE
Ask the tough questions up front: Have any of the neighbors caused problems? How are local schools? What’s the crime rate like in this neighborhood?
Spend the money for a professional home inspection on a house you’re seriously considering. Detecting issues up front will save you money and stress in the long run.
A REALTOR® will know the right questions to ask, and can help steer you away from problems and towards your ideal home. Buying a home is a significant decision- have confidence in your purchase!
Desrosiers Cook Associates
CENTURY 21 Assurance Realty Ltd.