by Jonathon Alsdorf
While buying a home CAN be a stressful endeavor, it does not have to be an overwhelming experience. Keeping your expectations in check and carefully following a wise plan can not only help you reach the finish line of buying your dream home, it can help you do it with your sanity in tact. Keep reading, and we'll tell you how
1. Choose a broker you can trust.
A broker ought to make the process of purchasing your next home easier and less stressful. While whatever broker you choose will not have a magic wand which will alleviate all the problems that can arise in a real estate transaction, they should be able to anticipate potential problems and smooth out the road ahead of you. Make sure you have a broker who will be willing to listen to you and understands your needs, but who is also willing to be honest with you and help you to understand the realities of buying a home. Choose someone you can trust, even if they don't always tell you what you want to hear.
2. Choose a mortgage banker and get pre-approved - before you shop.
One of the more heartbreaking circumstances in buying a home is when you find your dream home, get your heart set on it, and then discover that you cannot secure financing for it. This is why we tell our clients to get pre-approved. It will help you to know what type of house to look for, and not waste your time with houses that are out of range - not to mention avoiding the heartbreak of having to let your dream home go. The earlier in the process you can get a clear and reasonable picture of how much you have to spend, the better.
3. Don't be in a hurry if you don't have to be in a hurry.
Moving into a new house is exciting and it's hard to wait. Some people find themselves in circumstances where they are REALLY eager to move into their new home so they can be out of their current situation which may be less than ideal. The fact is, self-induced pressure can end up adding a great deal of stress to the process. While most closings go very well, some are delayed and if you are in a hurry, it can make your blood-pressure skyrocket and nobody needs that. Give yourself plenty of extra time and assume there will be delays - if the process goes extra smoothly and quick, it will be a pleasant surprise.
4. Take some time to think about what really matters...and what doesn't.
If your budget is such that you can have it all, great! But for most, this just isn't very realistic. Make a list and then prioritize it. Decide what is more important, a big yard for the kids to play in, or a 3 car garage. Is it more important to have a formal dining room or the kitchen you really like? If you can work on understanding what really matters most to you and can prioritize your preferences, you will be able to know better when you are looking at the right house - and your broker will have a better idea of how to help you find it.
5. Make an offer that works for you and is FAIR.
Your broker should be feeding you information which will help you understand the true market value of the home you want to buy. There are many factors that contribute to a fair price including the local housing market in general, the condition of a home, the location of the property, and what similar homes in the area are selling for right now. There are also intangible factors which can contribute to perceived value for the sellers. Determining a truly fair value for the home can help you feel you are not overpaying for the home, while still making an offer the seller can live with also...then, when you have made your offer, expect a counter offer.
6. Don't sweat the small stuff - that's your broker's job.
When you find the right house and begin moving through the process towards closing, things are going to come up; inspection issues, title issues, timing issues...remember this is the reason the process is in place - so these issues are forced to the surface to be dealt with. Don't panic, they can all be dealt with and your broker is there to help you through the whole process. When the issues arise, just remember, it means the process is working and you are one step closer to move in!
Enjoy the adventure!
Buying a home can be a fun and exciting time for most people. It is sometimes done during a time of transition that is full of promise and excitement, but it can also seem slow and frustrating. The most important factor that will help keep your stress level low is managing your own personal expectations and approaching the process with a good plan. A good broker should be able to guide you through the whole process in such way that will help you to navigate the ups and downs of home buying with minimal stress.
At Durango Star Realty, our goal is to help you accomplish just that - finding a home you will love without loosing your mind and stressing out. We think buying a home (and selling a home) should be a joyful experience, give us a call and let us help you find your next home!