Smart Home Buying Tips From Real Estate Agents and Expert Realtors

Tips for Getting The Best Price for a Home

Everyone wants to spend the least for the best property when it comes to purchasing a home. There are things that can be done to get the best deal possible. Making yourself knowledgeable about the current market and planning carefully.

Homework First

It is important to know if the property you want is one that you can afford. Find out if you are pre-approved to get a mortgage. The paperwork takes time so make sure that it is in order early in the process. This will make it easier for you to make an offer on the house you want when you find it.

Fix It Up

The first home does not have to be ready to move in. A house that needs superficial things done can save you money. Little things like paint can make it more presentable. Any remodeling that you do to a fixer upper will increase the resale value.

Considerations for Buying a Fixer-Upper

The home that no one wants now, but everyone will eventually want is the one you want to buy. Out of date fixtures, worn-out carpet and peeling paint are turnoffs that are easily fixable. There is the potential for making a profit should you decide to resale after some cosmetic work. Avoid buying near a school, close to a landfill or on a busy intersection.

The location must be desirable as well as the home itself. Examine the appearance of the neighbor where you are considering buying to ensure that it is desirable to other buyers. It is important to remember not all homes have already had the listing price adjusted to take in any work that needs to be done.

Easy Fixes

There are some things are easy to fix including:

  • Wallpaper, painting and patching walls
  • Laying carpet, laying tile or refinishing the floors
  • Replacing light fixtures
  • Addition of ceiling fans
  • Fix broken windows
  • Replace subfloors under leaks
  • New doors
  • Refinishing or replacing cabinets
  • Addition of a deck
  • Paint the exterior
  • Change light switches and receptacles

Expensive Fixes

  • Roofing, the old roof might need tearing off
  • Updating electrical, sewer lines and plumbing
  • Pouring concrete for various aspects of the home
  • Replacing windows
  • Remodeling bathrooms or kitchens
  • Adding onto the home
  • Adding a central air unit or replacing the HVAC system
  • Shoring up the foundation

Inspections for Fixer-Uppers

The home should be inspected by a licensed home inspector for all real estate transactions before making a full commitment to the sale. There are several inspections you want to become familiar with before buying a home and consider the cost of them when making an offer on a home that you have to fix up.

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Types of Inspections

  • Roof certifications at the expense of the seller if they have not given you evidence of the roof’s age and condition.
  • There are sellers that will not pay for a home warranty, but some see it as insurance against getting calls about things going wrong after the closing.
  • Inspections for pest. Ask for an inspection for damage for pests common in the area. Make the purchase depend on the approval of an inspection and the seller paying for any related repairs.
  • Sewer lines age with the property. It is important to have both septic tanks and sewer lines inspected.
  • A report from an engineer will make you aware of geological or natural hazards. Take not of nearby landfills, and other hazards that could be detrimental to the resale like contamination reports.

It is important to take finances, expertise and how much effort you want to put into a home to make it fully inhabitable before buying one.

Average Property Values

Work with your real estate agent to get the average prices of properties in the area and the actual values. Look at pictures of the homes, the materials it was built with and home’s finishes. The size of the lot should also be taken into consideration. Everything should be considered because everything will have an impact on the home’s price. Research is beneficial to price negotiations.

Have the Offer Explained

There will be a reason that you make the offer you do, have your real estate agent explain it. The seller needs a clear understanding of the offer. Adding a personal touch helps to start a dialogue.

Time on Market

Property that has been on the market from six months to a year should cause a caution flag, people like to sell homes quickly. Get your agent to call to find out more about the house. You can still make an offer. You have a chance of getting the home below asking price when it has been on the market that long.

Buy When It’s Colder

Late fall and winter are the best times to buy because sellers are trying to get everything in order before the holidays. There is less competition because most people do not want to move during the winter.

Credit Rating is Important

People who have better credit are favored by mortgage companies. Shopping around will ensure the best packages and rates for your current situation. Credit scores should be 680 or higher. Organize the history of employment and income so that they are in good standing to avoid paying a higher rate. Ensure that you are paying your bills on time and check your credit history for any adverse reports. Negative items on your credit report should be corrected prior to applying for a mortgage.

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