If you’ve ever paid attention to the signs of the times, you’ll notice the similarities between “economical trend” and “trends in real estate”. Basically, whenever the nation’s economy is doing well, one surefire way of knowing this is when the stocks are up and performing above average. This is when the stock market is “red hot”, meaning that investments are on the rise, including real estate investments.
Depending on the performance of the economy, we can tell whether the current market for real estate is hot or cold, and if we’re in a buyer’s market or a seller’s market. Still, there are some regions within the nation that stand resilient, regardless of what type of economical trend we are in.
If you’re a first time home buyer, here are a few insider tips for finding your Dream Home, and paying your Dream Home price (or at least getting close to it).
How do you define your Dream Home? Do you know exactly what you’re looking for, and what you’re willing to settle for? For instance- how many stories, property size, neighborhood (urban, suburban, country), number of baths and bedrooms, amenities, etc.
Get a professional opinion by enlisting the help of an agent or broker. These are licensed professionals who have access to lists of available properties. Usually, they’re willing to give you free basic information property searches. Normally there is a charge for this information, but in a cold market, you’ll find a slew of agents willing to provide this information for free.
Now that you’ve got an idea of- what kind of house you desire, and where you would like to live, you’re ready to find out how much you can qualify to purchase a home. In most cases, you’ll probably have to apply for a loan if you can’t pay full price of the home upfront. The best approach for this is to first apply for a “Loan Pre-Approval”. Using your financial information, you can determine the following- your affordable price range (realistically), and your loan repayment options (mortgage). You won’t be obligated to purchase, and there’s time to “shop around” for the competitive prices.
Get a list of sales comps (comparable) for homes that fit your Loan Pre-Approval value. Be realistic and stay below the Pre-Approval price range- there’s always the chance that you won’t qualify for more money when the time comes to submit your offer to purchase the property. Your real estate professional or consultant should be able to assist you on this.
Other factors that can increase your chances for getting the property that you want- get a feel for your seller’s motivation level (why do they want to sell the property; are they willing to offer a discount for more money down, lease with an option to buy, lower price for necessary repairs, etc.); are there other homes in the area (comps) that are of same quality, or better, for the same price; consider other location options- don’t limit yourself to just one location.
It will take some time searching for that Dream Home with the Dream Price, but once you find it, the wait will be well worth the time and effort.