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First-Time Home Buyer Tip: Go Window Shopping Before You Buy

Purchasing a home is a huge investment, most likely the largest financial decision you will make in your
lifetime. You are nervously optimistic, have followed your Realtors advice and are pre-approved for a home loan, and you have narrowed your home choices down to your top 2-3 favorites.

The price, location, and home upgrades are nearly identical, which is making the home buying decision even tougher. Do you go with the new construction property, the older home with character, or maybe the unassuming house with the fantastic yard? Choosing is difficult, so the below tips are provided to help facilitate a quicker decision.

  1. Drive through the prospective neighborhood in the morning, early afternoon, and in the evening. Each time slot will give a different perspective on how busy the area is, the traffic congestion, and the noise level of the community.
  2. Visit the prospective schools, during school time. There is no better way to see how a school operates then to see organized chaos in action.
  3. Drive to and from work via the property locale during your normal work hours. A 10 mile trip can be a 40 minute drive, one way. Are you ok with a commute or do you consider car time wasted time?
  4. Stop and talk with the neighbors. But, be warned…even good intending neighbors can give the wrong signals so apply your filters as necessary. Listen intently but remember their experiences may not be yours.
  5. Check with your state sex offender registry and your local sex offender site, if available. Protecting your kids should be your top priority so do not leave anything to chance.
  6. Visit www.SpotCrime.com or another online crime source to see the activity in your future neighborhood. Finding out there is high crime in the area should be done prior to moving in, not after.
  7. Take a close(r) look at the surrounding area. Is there a highway, active train tracks, or other distraction close by? Is the distraction something you can live with or will it be too much of an issue?

You want your future love nest to be everything you envision it will be, so take the time to do your homework, ask your Realtor plenty of questions, and always make it a point, at a minimum, to follow the list above.

Most of all, take a deep breath, stay positive during the entire transaction, and enjoy your house hunting experience.

Pre-Purchase Final Walkthrough: Should You Do It?

There are several things you need to check before you purchase a house. It is essential that you get what you paid for. You have to inspect the property carefully for damages. List the changes you want and include them in your purchase contract. This will help ensure that you will get the type of property you have in mind. However, you have to make sure that your conditions set in the contract are followed or you will end up with a home that does not meet your expectations. This is why you should do a final walkthrough.

What happens in the final walkthrough?

The final walkthrough happens before the closing. Here, the buyer has the chance to check the property and verify that the agreed changes are made. It is important that you refer to the contract while inspecting the house to make sure that you do not miss anything. Aside from making sure that the repairs are made, see to it that the repairs were done properly, if it is not, request that they redo it or deduct it from the price of the property.

Aside from the repairs, there are other elements you need to take note of. By this time, everything that should not be in the house should be gone. This includes the things that are not included in the sale including the personal items of the owners. In addition to that, no one should also be occupying the house. You do not want to deal with eviction after the closing especially if you want to transfer there right away.

Check that the items you agreed to be there are still there. Several times, a seller would give freebies. For instance, they will leave some of the furniture behind so that you will purchase the house. Some would offer to leave their couch, their cabinet and the like. If you have agreed to buy the house because of these freebies, make sure that they are still around before the final walkthrough.

Most importantly, have a final look at the condition of the house before purchasing it. Check the major systems, the walls, floors, the interior and the exterior. See to it that it is in the condition that you agreed in. If you fail to do this and you find damages, you will be very disappointed with your purchase.

The importance of the final walkthrough:

The final walkthrough is essential even if you have no demands for changes or if you agreed to purchase it as is. This is to make sure that the property is not in a worse condition that it is already in. They might be taking more from the property without you knowing it.

What makes this very important is that it is the last opportunity for you to check that the seller has held up his part of the bargain. This is also the last chance for you to address the different concerns that were not addressed properly.

The final walkthrough is essential before you make the closing to ensure that you have the house you want in the condition you desire.

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Real Estate Tip #3

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Real Estate Tip #2

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Real Estate Tip #1

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