Buyer Tips - 10 Deadly Real Estate Mistakes
- Searching without an Action Plan to Buy
Buying a home is ranked as one of the biggest personal investments one can make. Being organized and in control will contribute significantly to getting the best deal possible with the least amount of stress. Before you can create a plan of action, meet with your REALTOR® to lay the groundwork for your decision making process.
- Making an offer on a home without being pre-qualified.
It’s important to get pre-approved before you begin your home search. An interest rate guarantee protects you in times of rising rates and ensures that your initial projected payments do not suddenly escalate, resulting in additional interest charges. Your REALTOR® can help initiate this process. Ask for a list of lenders who offer special loans and lower rates tailored to your unique situation. Avoid Internet lenders. They typically fail to fund the loan in time for your closing, or heap on "junk" fees at the last minute when it is too late to shop for a new lender.
- Not having a home inspection.
Making an offer on a home is usually made after spending an hour or so of viewing the property. Isn't it worth ensuring you will not be surprised later with deficiencies costing thousands? Your REALTOR® can recommend several reputable home inspectors and will ensure appropriate clauses are included in the Contract for Purchase which includes a contingency for a home inspection. If the inspection report does not meet your approval, you have the option to negotiate the items in question or terminate the contract and have your earnest money deposit returned.
- Passing up a great deal
Don't miss the best deal available in the marketplace today! If you find a great home that meets the majority of your needs, don’t hesitate. What is available today may not be tomorrow. If you follow your action plan you can make a secure decision and a reasonable offer.
- Failing to obtain a Comparative Market Analysis before offering
Before making an offer to purchase that special home, you must have an accurate idea of market value to ensure you do not overpay. Your REALTOR® will prepare a Comparative Market Analysis (CMA) showing competitive properties, what similar homes have recently sold for and the recent price trends. This is the same type of report the seller receives when deciding on an asking price. Isn’t it important for you to have access to the same information as the seller?
- Not considering long-term needs.
Whether you’re moving-up, sizing down or relocating you need to determine where you want to live and the best location that meets the lifestyle of your family. The most important aspect of buying real estate is still Location, Location, Location! Your REALTOR® can help you with your criteria and selection process for the best location. Here are some factors to consider:
- Type of home you prefer: single family, condo, town home, new construction, villa, etc.
- Community amenities, recreation, pool, park, etc.
- Convenience for you and/or family members
- Proximity to work, school, shopping, recreation, etc.
- Crime rate of neighborhood
- Property taxes, is there a community bond
- Local transportation
- Not knowing the neighborhood
You can't possibly know all the neighborhoods as well as a professional REALTOR® who searches homes for a living. A professional REALTOR® has in-depth knowledge of the various neighborhoods in your desired area that match your family’s lifestyle. Searching for the right neighborhood is the first step in the home buying process.
- Not knowing total costs involved.
Not only do you have the cost of your down payment, usually 5%-10% you will likely want to do a Home inspection, you may need an appraisal, Insurance, have utilities connected, and other Moving expenses. It’s important to have a clear idea of your expenses.
- Failing to use effective negotiating skills and strategies
Many buyers think that the best way to achieve a fair purchase price is by offering low. This is the strategy of the naive buyer who is not in possession of all the facts essential to negotiating the best possible deal. Creative negotiating usually means a better deal with minimum hassles. Your REALTOR® indicates how offers are presented to the seller to maximize the likelihood of acquiring the chosen property with the most favorable terms.
- Not using RE/MAX River City for all you Real Estate and referral needs.
REALTORS® are committed to using the experience gained through hundreds of successful negotiations. Commissions are totally paid by the sellers, and your REALTOR® negotiates the best deal for YOU! Many times, buyers avoid using the services of a REALTOR® under the mistaken belief that it costs them more money - or that they can negotiate a better deal directly with the seller. Wrong! You need a professional looking out for your best interests. Considering the importance of your home purchase, do-it-yourself can be an expensive mistake. An astute REALTOR® has better information and valuable expertise to help you get the best possible deal. Use it to your advantage.