Buying a house is simple, right? Just call an agent, look up a few ads on the internet, and you’re done. Unfortunately, it’s not that easy, and there are a lot of traps that first-time home-buyers can fall into. Here are a few tricks-of-the-trade to help you avoid those pitfalls and get your perfect Home for Sale Irvine.
1. Make Sure Your Bank Letter Means Something
A lot of excited home-buyers start off by walking into a bank and asking for a pre-qualification letter. Letter in hand, they excitedly make an offer on their dream home, only to find themselves rejected. Why? Because sellers know that banks provide pre-qualifications like candy. Pre-approval, on the other hand, means that a bank has carefully examined your finances and agreed in advance to give you a loan for the stated amount. This can make a big difference in getting an offer accepted.
2. Get the Ugly Duckling
Sure, you want to be the envy of all your neighbors with your beautiful, spacious new house. The trouble is that the biggest or nicest house in the neighborhood has proportionately less resale value than its more average neighbors. That’s because future buyers with extra cash will just go to the better neighborhood rather than getting the best house in a slightly worse neighborhood. Instead, go for one of the smaller houses in the neighborhood or one that needs updating. That way, you can improve it to match the other houses and see your equity rise dramatically.
3. Never Fall in Love
Until you get the keys, that is. Experienced home-buyers know that it’s a bad idea to get emotionally invested in a home before it’s officially yours. That can lead to a lot of expensive mistakes like ignoring the inspection or getting involved in a bidding war. It’s tough when you’re picking your next home, but try to evaluate prospective properties objectively and leave your heart out of it until it’s all over.
4. Be a Creep
You probably shouldn’t go peeking in peoples’ windows, but make sure you visit the neighborhood numerous times before making your final decision. Check out what the traffic is like at the times you would be driving to and from work. See how the streetlights look at night and if there are any unsavory people loitering around after dark. Maybe even hang out in the local park for a while to see how active the community’s social life is. You’ll be living in the community just as much as in the house, after all, so you might as well find out if you like it before signing anything.
5. Know the Lines
A lot of friendly neighbors have turned into enemies by border disputes. These can be as simple as finding out who owns the fence or as legally complicated as discovering that your neighbor owns a foot of your property when you’re trying to widen your driveway. Either way, it’s best to know up-front, so make sure you get an accurate survey of the property, so you know what you’re getting.