Ready to buy a home? That is fantastic! Let me help you prepare for success. Right now we are facing a highly competitive buyer’s market where homes are selling in a day or two with multiple offers. Having all your ducks in a row is crucial to making an offer. So before you begin your home search, here are a few steps you need to do beforehand:
Just because you can get a $400,000 mortgage doesn’t mean you should. Check your monthly expenses and see where you will be comfortable.
This step keeps some people stuck as “window shoppers” but it shouldn’t. It is an easy process to get started and it gives you a world of information on what homes you should be looking for. You will know what the max price range is (along with your budget) and if the home is required to be “move-in ready” (no major repairs needed). If you want a “fixer upper” you will need a cash offer to “DIY” or a loan. If a loan is needed, talk to a mortgage representative about your options because a rehab loan will require you to have the repairs completed by a licensed contractor and add the repair costs to the loan. These are the type of things you need to know ahead of time, and a good lender will have you “ready to go” with a pre-qualification letter to submit with your offer.
Without the prequal letter a seller will not consider your offer and can cause you to miss out on a home in this fast moving market. A good agent will never recommend that you tour homes prior to the pre-qualification process because it is not in your best interest. When I was a brand new agent I took a couple out to see homes and they had not started the prequal process. I didn’t want to tell them no and felt we could do that step later. They fell in love with a home and decided to make an offer. But they found out from a lender that they could not go that high in price range. After that, every house they saw in a lower price range never measured up to the one they fell in love with. It was heart breaking. My job is to represent you the best way possible, so I try and prevent this from happening by having you ready out of the gate!
What do you want in your home? Do you need 3 bedrooms, a rec room or an office space? Is a garage needed or can you have a full basement instead? What is a must have/nice to have/deal breaker? Make a list and have it ready for me!
Choose the areas you will consider. Need a certain school district, or within a short drive to work? Will you consider a longer drive to work for more acreage? Decide what will work for you before you search.
If you have your budget, preapproval letter, and shopping list – you are ready to jump into your home search and I will guide you on making decisions with your offers to compete in this market! If you have not completed these steps already, contact me and let me help you get started. I can recommend a few lenders if you do not already have one and make sure you are ready to tour homes and make an offer. Click below to see our buyer guide, and a printable “What to Expect” list.