Home buying is a very responsible thing. There are so many homes for sale and real estate market is so active. Realtor.com is forecasting the 10 percent growth in new home sales. 17% of under 35 year olds saved for down payments in 2016, which means they will make up more of the buyers in 2017. According to the Zillow Group Report, half of all buyers are under age 36, and 47 percent are first-time buyers. 46 percent of buyers admit that the search takes an average of 4.2 months. It comes with competition, disappointment and many concerns. To get a better deal, use the following home buyer tips.
- To find the right house, loop through all the offers and buyer tips. Your goal is to choose a house that you really love, the perfect one for you. You won’t get an ideal home right away, give yourself enough time to detect it. The start point is shopping online. Visit sites which let you see the wide range of real estate, new home buyer tips and help you decide what you really want. One of such sites is Zillow.
- Examine the houses, neighborhood, district you want to move to properly. Look for detailed information on preschools, schools, hospitals, clinics and the facilities you get there, public transportation, its costs, crime statistics, even monthly bills. Keep a reflective journal. It’s a good tool to collect, keep and analyze all the details about houses and consider the home's potential. Write down everything you like and dislike about the houses, every new home buyer tips you hear, take lots of pictures including the house address. In order to check out the neighborhood, visit websites like City-Data and Walk Score. And don’t forget to meet the neighbors and ask for tips on purchasing a home:
- house history;
- transport noise;
- problems with utility services like gas, electricity or water;
- good communications service providers and operators in the area, etc.
- Contact professional real estate consulting services and get tips on purchasing a home they provide. Banks are good places to get home loans, or mortgage loans. For the beginning, visit the bank and talk to a loan officer. Ask about loan rate and circumstances of it. Analyze your financial status, employment history, provide some documents (e.g. a paycheck stub, income tax return). To choose the best option, get at least two loan offers. Ask extra buyer tips (type of the loans, the interest rate, annual percentage rate, discount points and origination fees, prepayment penalty,etc.). Real estate agents. There are some types of them:
- A buyer's agent. He works with you (a buyer) from the start to the closing.
- A seller's agent. He works with the home seller from the start to the closing.
- Dual Agent. He works both with the buyer and the seller in the same transaction.
- Transaction Coordinator. He assists a real estate agent or a broker in collecting all papers, opening the escrow account, signing and filling out the disclosures, meeting deadlines.
- Realtor is a real estate professional and a member of the National Association of Realtors.
- Broker who has been trained and passed the license exam for real estate brokers. This professional is able to have his own firm, manage teams of agents under him. Brokers get special wholesale rates from lenders. It’s a good idea to find a broker if you can't get a loan elsewhere or want to find a better rate than your local bank offers.
- Associate Broker. This person works under real estate broker and has a broker's license.
The right agent should have a state license and be a member of the local real estate trade association. It means this person will have access to the multiple listing service. It is good to know his experience, schedule, whether he works alone or in a team. Read the reviews about the issues that can happen while dealing with real estate agents. For example, this Home Buyer Investor Group online review was submitted on PissedConsumer.com. It is about a consumer who gave money to a company: "I gave HBI the 2500 then 5k and then they no longer answered their phones! everything was disconnected. They just disappeared..."
- One of the useful home buyer tips is to contact Homeowners association (HOA) and to find out whether the property you want to buy is a part of it. This organization takes care of maintenance and repair issues. It has certain rules like exact color of the painting your home, the types of vehicles you can park on the street or in your driveway, etc. HOA charges certain fees. They range from $200 to $400 per month. The HOA house values were found to be 0.54% higher. It also can take action against the delinquent homeowner. Contact the Homeowners association, ask about buyer tips connected with this organization and get a copy of their rules.
- You found the house to buy. What’s next? Check out these tips on purchasing a home.
- The seller gives you the Disclosure report. It is a written form about all physical problems and defects. It is in the form of boilerplate documents with seller’s answers on yes/no questions connected with the house. The report should fulfill the requirements of Civil Code Section 1103.2 and provide the required Natural Hazard Disclosure Statement.
- Next step is a professional inspection company. It examines all the Structural systems of the house and gives you a written report detailing any problems found. Check whether the company is registered before retaining them. Inquire about the length of the inspection (it takes about 3 hours), review a sample report provided by your inspector, charges for a reinspection. Sign an agreement with it and pay the inspector. It is important to walk around with him/her: get on the roof, go into the basement, and venture into the crawlspace. It is very helpful to read reviews about the inspector, like this Huffman Inspections review published on PissedConsumer about the items that were damaged during the inspection process.
"Word to the wise, beware of allowing Huffman Inspections of Colorado to do a home inspection for any reason on your property. I am the owner of a Real Estate Company that allowed him to do an inspection for the buyers on a property we had listed. Many items where damaged in the process..."
- You can also protect yourself against unpaid taxes or water bills, and many other problems that are not known at closing, by title insurance
- Another new home buyer tip here is to get your own inspector and not go with the realtor’s friend.
- Also beware of a home warranty. Before you purchase one, make sure you understand that it is different from a home insurance. A home warranty is a contract with a company to cover only certain types of repairs and replacements and is not concerned with compensations for burglary and/or accidents.
Bought the house and discovered home defects after the sale? A portion of new home buyer tips for you.
- Figure out the possible responsible parties – the seller, the seller's real estate agent, your inspector.
- Next step is to send a demand letter and ask for the costs to repair the defect. Discuss the problem with responsible party and try to go to mediation with all the parties.
- If you aren't able to resolve your dispute, file a lawsuit. But decide whether the problem will cost less to repair yourself than to pursue in court.
It is very important to follow these home buyer tips in order to find the dream house. Many things can go wrong. Pay attention to details. Now that you have become a homeowner, to ensure positive further experience, you may learn some homeowners tips.
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While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of this publication, it is not intended to provide legal, medical, accounting, investment, or any other professional advice as individual situations will differ and should be discussed with an expert and/or lawyer.