When house-hunting fever strikes, it’s easy to let it take over and just download the latest real estate app and immediately hit the streets to tour homes on your own. If you want to be successful though, there are a few tips and questions you should prepare for first.
To help you find the best possible home for you and your family, here are my best tips on how to search for a new home the right way.
Do Your Research First
Yes, your real estate agent is the expert, but as with anything in life, you want to come to the table prepared. Do your homework and be proactive!
Check out the neighborhoods you like online and drive around the area on the weekends and in the evenings, so you can get a feel for your potential neighbors, the activity and vibe of the area, the schools, and the overall community.
Understand the Terminology and Process
Purchasing a home is unlike any other purchase you’ll ever make. It’s both exciting and overwhelming, so you want to be as prepared as possible before you begin the process.
If this is your first home purchase, take time to understand the real estate process and basic terminology.
Home Search Tips
- Avoid searching for homes that are over your budget. Establish your parameters before you start your home search, stay within your budget, and allow some wiggle room for negotiating.
- Always take your realtor with you when you tour a home. Their extra set of expert eyes will spot things you might otherwise overlook. Also, if they let you, snap a few photos and takes notes so you can remember the details about the house later.
- Before you make an offer, walk through the home twice. You might be surprised by what you notice the second time through.
- Speaking of touring a home, open all doors, windows, and cabinets. You want to know as much as you can about the house before you consider making an offer.
- If it’s your second walkthrough, bring your tape measure and make sure the house will fit your furniture. Also, take a moment to just sit quietly in the living and the master bedroom to find out how much outside noise you can hear. If possible, tour the home first on a weekday and the second time on a weekend so you’ll get a full idea of what the neighborhood is like.
Work with a Realtor
In today’s digital age, with so much information available at your fingertips, many people wonder if they really need to work with a realtor or if they can buy and/or sell a home on their own.
While there are some people who are able to do this successfully, trying to buy or sell a home on your own is risky business and not something most of us should attempt. The experience and expertise a realtor brings to the table can save you time and money.
A realtor will also make the overall search process easier by doing the legwork for you — they will pull together a list of houses that meet your wants and needs and call to schedule the showings on your behalf.
Ready to get started? Contact me now!