THINKING OF BUYING A HOUSE 10 TIPS YOU SHOULD FOLLOW
THINKING OF BUYING A HOUSE 10 TIPS YOU SHOULD FOLLOW
1. Don't buy if you can't stay put.
If you can't commit to
remaining in one place for at least a few years, then owning is probably not
for you, at least not yet. With the transaction costs of buying and selling a
home, you may end up losing money if you sell any sooner - even in a rising
market. When prices are falling, it's an even worse proposition.
2. Start by shoring up your credit. Since you most likely
will need to get a mortgage to buy a house, you must make sure your credit
history is as clean as possible. A few months before you start house hunting,
get copies of your credit report. Make sure the facts are correct, and fix any
problems you discover.
3. Aim for a home you can really afford. The rule of thumb is
that you can buy housing that runs about two-and-one-half times your annual
salary. But you'll do better to use one of many calculators available online to
get a better handle on how your income, debts, and expenses affect what you can
4. If you can't put down the usual 20 percent,
you may still qualify for a loan. There are a variety of
public and private lenders who, if you qualify, offer low-interest mortgages
that require a small down payment.
5. Buy in a district with good schools. In most areas, this
advice applies even if you don't have school-age children. Reason: When it
comes time to sell, you'll learn that strong school districts are a top
priority for many home buyers, thus helping to boost property values.
6. Get professional help.
Even though the Internet
gives buyers unprecedented access to home listings, most new buyers (and many
more experienced ones) are better off using a professional agent. Look for an
exclusive buyer agent, if possible, who will have your interests at heart and
can help you with strategies during the bidding process.
7. Choose carefully between points and rate. When picking a mortgage,
you usually have the option of paying additional points -- a portion of the
interest that you pay at closing -- in exchange for a lower interest rate. If
you stay in the house for a long time -- say three to five years or more --
it's usually a better deal to take the points. The lower interest rate will
save you more in the long run.
8. Before house hunting, get pre-approved. Getting pre-approved
will you save yourself the grief of looking at houses you can't afford and put
you in a better position to make a serious offer when you do find the right
house. Not to be confused with pre-qualification, which is based on a cursory
review of your finances, pre-approval from a lender is based on your actual
income, debt and credit history.
9. Do your homework before bidding. Your opening bid should
be based on the sales trend of similar homes in the neighborhood. So before
making it, consider sales of similar homes in the last three months. If homes
have recently sold at 5 percent less than the asking price, you should make a
bid that's about eight to 10 percent lower than what the seller is asking.
10. Hire a home inspector. Sure, your lender will
require a home appraisal anyway. But that's just the bank's way of determining
whether the house is worth the price you've agreed to pay. Separately, you
should hire your own home inspector, preferably an engineer with experience in
doing home surveys in the area where you are buying. His or her job will be to
point out potential problems that could require costly repairs down the road.
I am Bob Schmalz the founder and Broker of West Los Angeles Real Estate Group. We are specialists in Santa Monica, Pacific Palisades , Brentwood, Bel Air and Beverly Hills just to name a few of the communities on the West Side Of L.A. that we have the knowledge to sell or find that perfect house for you.
Broker Lic #01813025
West LA Real Estate Group / Rodeo Realty email@example.com 310.505.5571
11940 San Vicente Blvd Suite #100
Los Angeles, CA 90049
I am Bob Schmalz a California Licensed Real Estate Broker, I am the founder and owner of West Los Angeles Real Estate Group, handling all Real Estate needs from residential to investments To name a few of the cities we cover in West Los Angeles; Beverly Hills, Santa Monica, Brentwood , Pacific Palisades and Malibu are some of the most popular. Our beliefs are that our clients should have the knowledge they need to make decisions in there Real Estate Goals. In this way our clients helps us make the right decisions for themselves.
FIRST TIME HOMEBUYERS:INTEREST RATES BELOW 4% + LOW DOWN PA
"Plain and simple, we wouldn't have our home if it weren't for Bob. My wife and I were first-time homebuyers, and Bob helped us through the process every step of the way. It didn't matter that our price range was on the low side, given the LA market - Bob treated us like VIP clients the whole way through. He worked with us for over four months, sending us listings every week, going out with us to see several each Saturday or Sunday, always with a smile on his face and the most helpful advice. I was concerned that he might lose patience with us, because we were very particular about what we wanted, but he made it a point to make sure we knew that we were the customers, and that we called the shots about this very important purchase. That said, he protected us from a couple of potentially bad decisions. He actually steered us away from a couple of places with higher listing prices (and therefore higher commissions) than what we eventually bought, because, in his words, they were "money pits" that would cost us too much in remodeling, etc.
When we finally found the perfect place, Bob knew just how to close the deal and helped us with every step, from the initial bid to renegotiations for repair costs to working with escrow. And we ended up getting a very good deal on this place - it's now worth considerably more than what we paid! Bob was friendly and humorous the whole way through, and he ultimately made what could be a stressful process a really enjoyable experience. Thanks, Bob!