How To Take The Trauma Out Of Homebuying
- Find a real estate professional who's simpatico. Homebuying is not only a
big financial commitment, but also an emotional one. It's critical that the
practitioner you choose is both skilled and a good fit with your personality.
- Remember, there's no "right" time to buy, any more than there's a right time
to sell. If you find a home now, don't try to second-guess the interest rates
or the housing market by waiting. Changes don't usually occur fast enough to
make that much difference in price, and a good home won't stay on the market
- Don't ask for too many opinions. It's natural to want reassurance for such a
big decision, but too many ideas will make it much harder to make a decision.
- Accept that no house is ever perfect. Focus in on the things that are most
important to you and let the minor ones go.
- Don't try to be a killer negotiator. Negotiation is definitely a part of the
real estate process, but trying to "win" by getting an extra-low price may lose
you the home you love.
- Remember your home doesn't exist in a vacuum. Don't get so caught up in the
physical aspects of the house itself - room size, kitchen - that you forget such
issues as amenities, noise level, etc., that have a big impact on what it's
like to live in your new home.
- Don't wait until you've found a home and made an offer to get approved for a
mortgage, investigate insurance availability, and consider a schedule for
moving. Presenting an offer contingent on a lot of unresolved issues will make
your bid much less attractive to sellers.
- Factor in maintenance and repair costs in your post-homebuying budget. Even
if you buy a new home, there will be some costs. Don't leave yourself short and
let your home deteriorate.
- Accept that a little buyer's remorse is inevitable and will probably pass.
Buying a home, especially for the first time, is a big commitment, but it also
yields big benefits.
- Choose a home first because you love it; then think about appreciation.
While U.S. homes have appreciated an average of 5.4 percent annually from 1998
to 2002, a home's most important role is as a comfortable, safe place to live.
Reprinted from REALTOR® Magazine Online by
permission of the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS®
Copyright 2005. All rights reserved.