Friday, October 8, 2010

Take the Stress Out of Homebuying on Grand Bahama

Images are homes listed with James Sarles Realty, Call 351 9081

by Jim Reed

Buying a home should be fun, not stressful. As you look for your dream home, keep in mind these tips for making the process as peaceful as possible.

1. Find a real estate agent whom you connect with. Home buying is not only a big financial commitment, but also an emotional one. It’s critical that the agent you chose is both highly skilled and a good fit with your personality.

2. Remember, there’s no “right” time to buy, just as there’s no perfect time to sell. If you find a home now, don’t try to second-guess interest rates or the housing market by waiting longer. You risk losing out on the home of your dreams.

3. Don’t ask for too many opinions. It’s natural to want reassurance for such a big decision, but too many ideas from too many people will make it much harder to make a decision. Focus on the wants and needs of your immediate family and friends — the people who will be living in and enjoying the home.

4. Accept that no house is perfect. If it’s in the right location, the yard may be a bit smaller than you had hoped. The kitchen may be perfect, but the roof needs repair. Make a list of your top priorities and focus in on things that are most important to you. Let the minor ones go.

5. 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 or by refusing to budge on your offer may cost you the home you love. Negotiation is give and take. Our Coldwell Banker agents are trained and experienced negotiators.

6. 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, etc. — that you forget about important issues as noise level, location to amenities and schools, and other aspects that will have a big impact on your quality of life.

7. Plan ahead. Don’t wait until you’ve found a home and want to make an offer to get approved for a mortgage, investigate home insurance, 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. Our Coldwell Banker agents can explain fully the process and what you need to do in what order.

8. Factor in maintenance and repair costs in your post-home buying budget. Even if you buy a new home, there will be costs. Don’t leave yourself short and then let your home deteriorate. This adds even more stress.

9. Accept that a little buyer’s remorse is inevitable and will probably pass. Buying a home, especially for the first time, is a big financial commitment. But it also yields big benefits. Don’t lose sight of why you wanted to buy a home in the first place, and what made you fall in love with the property you purchased.

10. Choose a home first because you love it; then think about appreciation. A home’s most important role is to serve as a comfortable, safe place to live.

Stop by our Coldwell Banker office and talk to any of our knowledgeable agents about taking the stress out of your buying experience.

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