Have you been looking for a new home for months without finding an acceptable property or – even worse – have you submitted several offers with none accepted? You could be committing one of The Seven Deadly Sins Of Home Buying. In a previous article I discussed the The Seven Deadly Sins Of Home Selling, let’s now look at how buyers can avoid their own Deadly Sins.
There are many sins that would hinder successful home buying, but I’ve selected these seven that have an easy solution (penance…). Here they are – the Deadly Sins that you must not commit.
1. Don’t Have A Household Budget
Knowing how much you can or want to spend on housing along with all of life’s other expenses is important to establishing a sustainable household budget. Making sure that home ownership doesn’t interfere with other priorities of equal or higher value is an integral part of the budgeting process. Penance: Create a household budget that takes everything you want to in life into consideration. Get help from a financial planning pro if needed.
2. Don’t Get Pre-Qualified For Financing
Pre-qualifying for financing (if you’re not paying cash) is more than establishing your maximum borrowing limit and purchase price. It is also begins the process of collecting the deep pile of paperwork that will be required to obtain financing once an offer is accepted. Proof of pre-qualification or pre-approval included with an offer increases the offer’s perceived value. Penance: Shop for a mortgage and get pre-qualified/pre-approved before you shop for a home.
3. Don’t Have A Written List of Prioritized Search and Selection Criteria
Written criteria make it easier to search for homes based upon your needs and budget. Identifying features using classifications such as must have, may have, neutral, should not have and must not have makes it easier to sort through and prioritize search results. Penance: Work with your broker to identify both basic search criteria and detailed selection criteria.
4. Rely On The Internet To Preview Properties
The quality of photographs and video tours now available online has increased significantly over the years. But those are tools used to highlight the strongest selling points of a property and may not always reveal mediocre features or problems. On the flip side, there are always a significant number of great properties on the market that are listed online with weak descriptions and bad photos. Penance: Don’t rely on online descriptions and photos alone, get out and view as many properties as you can during the screening process.
5. Don’t Ask Questions
There are three types of questions to ask about a property: features, condition, and offer selection criteria (specific needs of the seller). Not asking the right questions or making wrong assumptions can result in losing the opportunity to purchase a good property. Penance: Read disclosure documents provided by the listing broker, then submit a list of written questions as quickly as possible.
6. Take Your Time Preparing Your Purchase Offer
Good properties sell quickly when all the right conditions are in alignment. Buyers in such environments need to move quickly, too. Penance: Make your home search a priority and be prepared to make informed decisions quickly.
7. Include Outside Contingencies In Your Offer
Outside contingencies have no direct relation between buyer, seller and the property being purchased. The most common example is a requirement that you sell your current house before you close escrow on your purchase. Sellers usually put offers with outside contingencies on the bottom of the stack. Penance: Submit offers free of contingencies that have nothing to do with the property being purchased.
Ready To Do Your Home Buying Penance?
If you have questions about The Seven Deadly Sins Of Home Buying or need help buying a home, land or investment property, drop me a line. Contact Us