What You Don’t Want to do When You Start Looking at Houses
So, you’re thinking about buying your first home? Congratulations!! You’ve worked hard to get here, and you should be proud of where you are today. Buying a home can seem like a daunting process — it just may be the most expensive and emotionally charged purchase of your life. But don’t worry, we’re here to tell you the don'ts of purchasing your first home.
You may be unfamiliar with the term, but I bet you’ve done it. Doom-scrolling is spending an excessive amount of time reading large quantities of negative information online. Doom-scrolling can only lead to one thing… disappointment. If you’re getting your market information from someone based in LA or Boston, chances are you’re getting THEIR market statistics, not yours. Don’t stress over something that may turn out to be irrelevant. Just like our parents said, don’t trust everything you see online, trust a local professional (Okay we may have added that last part in but it's true).
2. LOOK AT HOMES OVER YOUR BUDGET
You’re simply setting yourself up for unrealistic expectations. While you’re window shopping these luxurious homes, you’ll feel underwhelmed once you step into a home you can afford and you’ll wonder why you never seem to be satisfied. This can lead to weeks and weeks of homes searching with no success because you’re still searching for that one house that makes you say ‘wow’. Truth of the matter is, you can’t afford it yet. Set your expectations in the beginning of your search, and don’t fall into temptation by chasing false hope.
3. ASK YOUR PARENTS/GRANDPARENTS FOR ADVICE
While we typically ask our loved ones for advice on all major life decisions, this can be a tricky one to navigate. While we love mom, dad, and gramps, the reality is that we live in two very different worlds. While they may have bought their home with a spit and a handshake, times have changed. As the market progresses prices change and so does protocol. Laws are set in place to correct previous issues; verbiage is adjusted and demand increases. While deciding how to submit a strong, competitive offer, it’s important to remember to listen to the professional.
4. LOOK AT HOUSES BEFORE YOUR PRE-APPROVED
“But what if I’m not ready to submit an offer?” Great question and I bet you can guess what my answer is going to be… You still need to be pre-approved and here’s why; most first-time home buyers don’t know what they can afford. By using secondary platforms, you’re receiving false information on a subject that holds a LOT of risk. There are many factors to your monthly payment (aka your budget) and by looking at blanket statements online, you’re doing yourself an injustice by not gathering all the information valid to your specific situation. Verifying with a local lender is the only valid source of information regarding your purchasing power.
The good news is that pre-approvals last 90 days, so you have time to shop! Without a pre-approval, you’re not only wasting the seller's time, you’re wasting your time. If you’re unable to write an offer on a property, then don’t visit that property. There are a lot of moving parts to a real estate transaction and we need to be courteous to all involved. You wouldn’t want to be kicked out of your home at 6:30 pm for someone who just wanted to snoop through your stuff, would you? Get pre-approved and shop with your wallet in hand.