Check out Realtor.com’s helpful hints for the home buying process. Then let Elena help you find the perfect one!
This is the really fun part, although it does come with its own unique challenges. Even if you love the entire process of house hunting, the options can be overwhelming. Ranch or Colonial? Suburb or city? Small apartment or palatial townhouse? Built-in 40-foot waterslide or stand-alone 40-foot waterslide? It’s hard not to feel like you’re drowning in the possibilities.
To help winnow the myriad options to find the perfect place for you, heed these tips—and happy searching!
Have a long chat with your agent
Here’s the simple truth: Only you will ultimately know which home is just right for you; however, a good agent will have a better handle on the market. Not only is your Realtor keeping a constant eye out for newly listed homes you might love, but he can also quickly go through your wish list and help you understand what is (and what isn’t) realistic.
So be sure to tell your agent not only what you’re looking for, but why you’re moving, too.
“Are [you] downsizing? Moving closer to work? Accommodating a growing family?” asks Nathan Dart, a Realtor in Rockville, MD. The reason it all matters: A savvy Realtor will point out things you might not have considered—such as the importance of a one-story home if you’re near retirement and planning to stick around for the long haul.
Don’t worry about timing
Patience is difficult. You want your new home right away. Waiting for something to fall into place can feel like endless purgatory. But that doesn’t mean you should rush the hunt.
“I’ve had clients who spend years in house-hunting mode,” says Gretchen Koitz, a Realtor with The Koitz Group in Bethesda, MD. Not that this is necessarily a good thing either.
Certainly there’s nothing wrong with finding a great home right away. But it’s best not to prioritize timing above all else unless it’s absolutely necessary (during a relocation, for example). Koitz says the idea of purchasing one of the first homes they see can be “very unsettling” for buyers. “They somehow think they’re not doing their due diligence if they don’t look for a predetermined amount of time,” she says. “Since we never know what’s coming on the market, we also never know when ‘your’ house will show up.”
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