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Tips For The House Hunter
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Tips For The House Hunter

Buying your first property will probably be both exhilerating and frightening. You are stepping into uncharted territory that can become overwhelming without the proper assistance. Think about it, you're making a major financial committment for the next 30 years of your life. The house hunting process can be draining and disappointing without the correct plan. I will provide some helpful tips that will turn your frowns into smiles when purchasing your home.

Budget

Before starting the hunt for your first property it is a good idea to have a budget. Know exactly what your purchase price range is from the bank. In order to do this you will have to get pre-qualified or pre- approved from a lender(bank). The pre-approval will provide the dollar amount the bank will finance for your purchase. This pre-qualification/pre-approval is based on both your credit score and debt-to-income ratio. Don't waist your time and others looking at properties you can't afford.

Search Neighborhoods

"Location, location, location" are the three essential words used in real estate. These words also apply to the home buyer. Know what kind of neighborhood you would like to live in. Conduct research on the school system, crime statistics, city services, libraries, parks, shopping centers, entertainment and median income. Drive through the neighborhood, not just during the day but at night, after 10pm. People that purchase homes in the winter are often surprised when the seasons change and spring and summer come around. They sometimes realize that the nice quiet block and community they cherish is actually very alive with undesirable activities. My advice to those that will be living in a very urban area is to purchase your property in the summer. You don't want any surprises two or three months down line after making that 30 year committment.

Property Research

Once you find some potential homes for purchase conduct some due diligence on the properties. You can go to your local county website and perform a free property owner search. This type of search will provide important information about the property, like the chain of ownership, mortgages, liens, judgements, and lis pendens. Information is power!! Armed with the proper information you will be able to make well informed decisions.

Assistance

Don't do all this hard work alone. Hire the helping hand of a real estate agent/broker. They are professionals trained in the real estate industry. An agent has access to tons of properties for sale. They can provide neighborhood statistics, ownership information, real estate taxes, and property values. Their skills in locating the perfect home for you are invaluable. Let them carry the burden of finding your home while you get on with your everyday life. You have other important things to do besides looking for properties all day.

Negotiate

Once you find the home that you would like to purchase, never, I mean never submit your highest price for an initial offer. Use the research that you or your agent conducted on the property as leverage. Negotiate a better price. Don't feel guilty about submitting a lower price. Remember, the seller wants to get a deal done, that's why their selling. Turn his/her situation into a win/win by both parties being satisfied with good price. If you do offer full asking price request some concessions from the owner like money towards closing cost or a repair escrow. Every penny saved is a penny earned!!!

These helpful tips are just a few good ones to utilize. Happy house hunting!


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