8 Huge & 1 Gigantic Error Home Buyers Make
Shopping for a home is an emotional experience. It’s also time consuming and comes with a myriad of details. Some buyers, (and their agents), however, caught up in the excitement of buying a home tend to overlook some items. Their home purchase then turns into an expensive process! These errors generally fall into three areas:
- Paying too much
- Losing a dream home to another buyer
- Buying the wrong home
When you have a systematic plan before you shop, you’ll be sure to avoid these costly errors. Here are some tips on making the most of your home purchase.
Bidding without sufficient information
What price do you offer a seller? Is the seller’s asking price too high? Is it a deal? Without research on the market and comparable homes, you basically are bidding blind. A professional REALTOR® who represents you, the buyer, can offer an unbiased opinion on the value of a home, based on market conditions, condition of the home and neighborhood. Without this knowledge, you could easily bid too much, or worse, miss out on a great buying opportunity.
Buying the wrong home
What are you looking for in a home? A simple enough question, but the answer can be quite complex. More than one buyer has been swept up in the emotion and excitement of the buying process only to find themselves the owner of a home that is either too big or too small. Perhaps they didn’t consider the drive to work, the distance to school or the many fix-ups that they really want to deal with now that the excitement has died down. Take the time now, to clearly define your wants and needs, discuss these wants and needs with your REALTOR®, put it in writing and use them as a yardstick with which to measure every home you look at.
Before you sign any documents, be sure the property you are considering is free of all encumbrances. A good REALTOR® will ensure that he has enclosed clauses to protect you. The last thing you want to discover before you move in is that there are tax liens, debts, undisclosed owners, leases, contracts or easements.
Can you now see why it is very important to have an experienced, knowledgeable and trusting REALTOR® to help you? A thorough systematic approach to real estate buying and selling, it can save you time, money and frustration!
Before the purchase is completed, a survey or title insurance should be a must. Most lenders will not issue a mortgage without a survey or title insurance. Again, a good REALTOR® will have a clause in the offer to protect you and make sure you discuss this with your lawyer.
Don’t expect every seller to disclose every physical detail that will need to be attended to. Use a professional home inspector to conduct a thorough inspection of the home, before you close the deal. A good REALTOR® will enclose a home inspection clause in the offer and only if the inspection report is suitable to you, would you waive that condition. (See my report: “The Role of a Home Inspector”) A professional REALTOR* will know the best home inspectors out there and should be able to give you the names of two or three.
Not Getting Mortgage Pre-approval
Pre-approval is quick, easy and free. Knowing before hand what you qualify for will help you to avoid disappointment. When you are shopping for a home, this will give you more power; the seller will consider your offer as a serious one.
Make sure you identify and uncover all costs-large and small- far enough ahead of time. A good buyer’s agent will discuss this with you, and you should discuss all fees and costs with your lender, your lawyer and any other professional you may use. (See my reports;”The role of a lawyer”, “The role of a lender”
Rushing the Closing
Take your time during this critical part of the process. Do you understand your mortgage details? Has any thing been forgotten? Does the paperwork and documentation reflect your understanding of the transaction? Will your buyer agent take you through your planned house 2-3 days before closing? (To ensure that there is no unusual changes in the condition of the home, that what is supposed to stay-stays).
The Biggest Gigantic Error I See?
Not interviewing and hiring a good REALTOR®.
A friend of a friend or a cousin or a referral may be fine, I respect that, but, do your homework. I cannot tell you how many times I have heard horror stories of people working with inexperienced or lazy real estate people.