10 tips for buying success! + checklist
CHOOSE THE RIGHT REALTOR® FOR YOU
Finding the REALTOR® that fits you is the first step to a successful and rewarding home buying experience. Like any business relationship, having a personal connection with your agent goes a long way to making your experience a positive one. Choose an agent dedicated to serving your needs, not only during the sale, but after the deal closes as well.
GET PRE-APPROVED FOR A MORTGAGE
Determining the price range you qualify for upfront will make your buying experience significantly 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 you negotiating power during the offer stage
SEARCH LIKE THE PROFESSIONALS
Have your REALTOR® set up an automated MLS® search for you. With custom searches tailored to fit your needs, presented in a user-friendly format, you will receive updates on new listings and price reductions at the same time as your REALTOR® does.
THINK LONG TERM
The average home buyer will live in the same house for 4-8 years. As we all know, a lot can change and occur in that time. Make sure you are looking at properties that fit your current needs as well as your plans for the future.
SEPARATE “MUST-HAVES” FROM “WANTS”
Home buying is a game of both elimination and selection. Your “must-haves” will easily narrow down your search to a short-list, and your “wants” will help you make a buying decision. Keep an open mind with your list. As you actively look for your new home, “must-haves” may be bumped to the “want” column and vise-versa.
GATHER INFORMATION 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 as much about your potential new home as you can.
REALIZE WHAT YOU CAN AND CANNOT CHANGE
You clearly can’t change the location of home and it can the very pricey to change the layout of a house. If a house has the layout you like, but the flooring, paint, cupboards, counters etc are not appealing to you, keep this all in mind as you decide. Your REALTOR® is of course at your disposal to advise you on whether or not the property in question and your goals for the property are financially sound.
DO YOUR DUE DILIGENCE
Your REALTOR® will advise you on what you should look out for, however, ultimately it is up to you on how far you wish to pry into the property. Ask the tough questions up front: Have the neighbors caused problems? What is the crime rate like in this neighborhood? etc.
Also, spend the money for a professional home inspection on the house you want to turn into a home. Detecting potential or current issues up front will save you the stress as well as your hard earned money for that new furniture you want.
BUYING A HOME IS A BIG INVESTMENT
It’s a little scary and confusing especially if it is your first home. The emotions
range from excitement when looking at potential new homes to “buyers
remorse”, which most people experience. Once they have made their choice and achieve an accepted offer on a property some homebuyers experience the feeling a few hours after submitting the offer of second-guessing yourself. This is very common. Be prepared for it!
There are a few expenses in the purchase of a home that some buyers are unaware of. Your REALTOR® will be more than happy to go over them with you. However, be prepared to have more money than just your down payment available when purchasing a new home.
CENTURY 21 Assurance Realty Ltd.