When purchasing a home, there are many important factors to consider. Below are 3 home buying tips to keep in mind throughout the process:
If you plan to finance the purchase of your home/condo with a mortgage, then your first step should be to contact a lender and go through the pre-approval process. You will have to supply the lender with the appropriate documentation/informtation for them to conduct a financial background and credit check. This is paramount for a few reasons.
First, you can’t submit an offer on a property without a pre-approval letter from a lender (unless you’re buying the home with cash). Second, before you start physically viewing homes you want to ensure that you’re a qualified buyer. Third, the pre-approval letter will provide a purchase price that you’re approved up to, which ensures you’re looking at homes in the appropriate price range. Lastly, the initial conversation(s) you have with the lender will provide a great foundation leading into the home search process as you’ll have an understanding of the financing aspect.
When viewing homes/condos focus on the space and not the owner’s/tenant’s belongings. It’s easy to get caught up in a poorly furnished or messy property and think that the resident’s poor taste or sloppiness is a reflection of the actual space. You’re not purchasing their decor or their unkemptness. All of that stuff will be gone when you move in. Focus on the functionality of the layout, the size of the rooms, and the features that are attached to the property (not the ugly piece of art work, or the beat-up old couch or chair like the one to the left). You need to be creative and you need to envision your belongings, or the furnishings you intend to purchase, and evaluate the space based on those mental images. Of course it’s nice to walk into a beautifully staged home that shows really well (smart sellers!), but that’s not to say they’re the only ones worth buying.
Always keep an open mind!! I’ll preface the rest of this tip by stating that I can’t count how many times I started with clients on one side of the city and they purchased on the other. Or, they were originally anti-condo, and they ended up purchasing a condo. They originally wanted multiple bedrooms, and they ended up purchasing a one bedroom unit. The list goes on and the scenarios vary, but the point being it’s okay to stray from your original game plan. In most cases, what you want is available, but you may have to edit a variable or two. You have to weigh the importance of certain elements, but if you maintain an open mind, you may find that your dream home is the property you never suspected.