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5 Tips & Tricks for a less stressful home purchase

Posted by Ethan Maas on Thursday, March 15th, 2018 at 1:29pm.

Fort Myers Beach shackDe-stress your home purchase

Sometimes searching for a home can be an uphill battle. Our team here at Dreamscape Realty Group wants to make sure you get the perfect home that is right for you.  The ‘right fit’ is determined in a variety of ways; from budget to location, it is crucial to consider all of what is valuable to you before making your choice.  I discovered five things to consider when evaluating your home purchase, but this isn’t all there is to it. For any further questions, we’re available night and day to answer any of your concerns, so contact us! Whether you're a first-time buyer or a seasoned veteran of the real estate industry, we would be happy to help.

1. Price: Don’t Overextend!   (“The 2.5 Rule”)

One suggestion is to never buy a home more than two and a half times your annual household salary.  That way you know you won’t have to secure an oversized mortgage that might inhibit your ability to live the life you want in your new hometown- and wouldn’t that defeat the purpose?  If money is an issue for you (as it is for most of us!) then don’t overextend yourself on price. Use the “2.5 Rule” for guidance.

2. School Zone:

Regardless of your familial status, don’t neglect the neighborhood & school zone research. Home values are determined by a variety of factors both ‘within’ and ‘without’ the property and having a home near a good school district will improve your resale values as well as widen the net you cast to potential future buyers. The same thing goes for the neighborhood: do your due diligence. 

3. Don’t Neglect, Inspect!

Make sure to hire a competent home inspector if you’re serious about buying a property.  You might find out that you’ve found an even better bargain than you thought! Even at worst you may find some underlying issues that you can use to your advantage during pricing negotiations. Regardless it is in your best interest to ‘try before you buy’, and that’s why any real estate professional will likely agree with us: Don’t Neglect, Inspect!

 We have also put together some tips on how you can conduct your own Ten Minute Home Walkthrough.  Your own eyes won't lie to you!

4. Get Pre-Approved:

Conduct a financial evaluation on yourself. Compile your monthly cash flow and decide what amount you’d like to spend on a mortgage each month.  Once you’re ready to seriously begin your home hunt: gather your paperwork, head down to the bank, and get pre-approved for a mortgage near your chosen price range. This serves several purposes, including motivating the seller as well as conveying your status as a serious buyer. This will give you an even better head-start with respect to negotiating power! 

5. There Goes the Neighborhood:

             This tip goes hand-in-hand with the school zone research.  If you plan to be out & about a lot, drive from your future home to nearby amenities during lunch & rush hour to evaluate traffic flow.  Hop onto Google Maps and plot the distance to your favorite destinations and landmarks.  If you’re a frequent traveler like myself, investigate how close to the nearest bypass and interstate you are.  Do you host guests frequently? If so, how’s the parking in your driveway and neighborhood?  Like I said, you might be pleasantly surprised by what you find- but either way you know what you’re in for.

Another final Recommendation:

     Don't "One Stop Shop" for data! Talk to your agent about what the CMA's say.  Use MLS-linked sites like ours to make sure you have the most up-to-date information.  For appraisal sites, look at five of them instead of just one! Combine information from sites like Zillow, Eppraisal, Realtor, Redfin, Rentometer, and more when evaluating a home, don't limit yourself to only one or even three data sources.

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Next Steps

For more tips and tricks of the trade, don't hesitate to contact us and we would be happy to share more advice with you! In search of a home? Use our free IDX search tool to view homes around South Florida, including:

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