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Here is a collection of some helpful and very informative articles that have been put together to help you in buying or selling your property.


Five Tips to Remember When Shopping for a Home

Written by Steve Cook on September 26, 2014

The process of finding and purchasing a home can be overwhelming. In order to make the process easier, real estate expert Steve Cook shares five tips every homebuyer should remember. The first step? Understand what it really costs to buy a home.

six-tips-to-remember-when-shopping-for-a-homeThe process of shopping for a home can be overwhelming, especially for first-time buyers. Inventories of homes for sale are still very thin in most markets and have yet to return to pre-housing bust levels. Particularly hard to come by are so-called “starter homes” because they are being scooped up by investors in addition to traditional buyers.

If you’re searching for a home in a tough housing market, don’t give up. Here are some tips that can help you find your dream home.

1. Draw up a budget. Buying a home is an expensive endeavor, so it’s important to be prepared. Finding your dream home, then discovering you haven’t got the cash to pull off the purchase, can be disastrous. Before you look at even one listing, draw up a budget that accounts for all costs, including:

  • down payment
  • closing costs
  • taxes
  • property insurance

2. Be ready to buy. Once you find a home, you must be ready to show the seller that you’re serious. One good way to do this is to get pre-approved for a mortgage. Today, many homes are being purchased by investors who are buying with cash, and you may be competing against one. Sellers won’t want to take a chance on you if there is a chance that your financing will fall through, so get a pre-approval letter from your lender to include with your offer.

3. Stay on top of new listings. Some real estate websites and brokerages post “coming soon” listings for properties that are not yet officially on the market. Spend time every day searching for these listings, as well as for new listings that fit your criteria.

4. Don’t be too picky on repairs. Your inspection will bring to light a number of issues that will need to be addressed, either before or after you close. Go through the list carefully and decide which repairs you can do yourself for little or no cost and which repairs the owner will either need to fix or compensate you for in the final settlement. By paring down the list to repairs that are significant and costly, you’ll improve your odds that repairs won’t become a deal breaker.

5. Don’t make an emotional decision. Don’t allow yourself to fall in love with a house until you have thoroughly checked it out and you know that you can afford it. Emotional buying decisions are bad decisions much of the time. Revisit your budget and get approved by your lender before you let down your guard.