Wilkinson Era Real Estate

Guidelines for Finding the House of Your Dreams

by Mundy Bringuier 09/15/2019

Finding the house of your dreams is a process that requires a lot of clarity, diligence, and patience. While it is possible for the first house you look at to be the ideal choice, it's a lot more likely you'll have to look at a dozen or more houses before finding the one that matches your requirements and feels like home.

Whether you're searching for your first home or your tenth, your decision will primarily be based on four factors: affordability, practicality, emotional appeal, and prevailing market conditions.

Affordability is a vital element in the mix because it's difficult to enjoy a beautiful new home if you're always stressed out about whether you'll be able to make the next mortgage payment! Developing a realistic and well thought-out budget is one of the first preliminary steps involved in launching a full-fledged search for your next home. In addition to being able to cover your current expenses and the cost of mortgage payments, you'll also want to ensure that there's a cushion in your budget for things like home maintenance, repairs, improvements, HOA fees (if applicable), property taxes, school taxes, and homeowner's insurance.

As far as practicality goes, your new home should -- at the very least -- live up to your basic needs and expectations. Ideally, all systems should work properly and be in good condition. Proximity to key locations, such as your job, shopping, and essential services can also have a direct impact on your quality of life. Long commutes, cramped quarters, or being buried by an avalanche of repair bills can definitely take some of the pleasure out of home ownership!

The majority of houses you'll look at will probably need some degree of updating, decorating, or repairs, but ideally, you'll want to tackle those projects over the next couple of years, rather than the immediate future! Having an experienced home inspector do a thorough inspection of the home you're interested in will help ensure you're not buying a home riddled with flaws, headaches waiting to happen, and other problems.

Although cost and practicality are vital aspects of buying a new home, you can't (and wouldn't want to) ignore factors such as aesthetics and emotional appeal. If you can't imagine you and your family living in and enjoying a house you're considering buying, it might be time to continue your search elsewhere! The house you ultimately choose should support your lifestyle, provide sufficient space for your family to grow and thrive, and be situated in a neighborhood in which you feel comfortable and safe.

To make the most of your available time and money, find an experienced real estate agent who's responsive to your needs and knowledgeable about the local real estate market. They will help you streamline your search, find houses that meet your criteria and negotiate the best possible price on your behalf.

About the Author
Author

Mundy Bringuier

 

When Buyers ask why I need a REALTOR®, here is my response....... with 19 years of experience. For one thing we have the experience, we know the pit-falls, and we know what to look out for when something doesn’t look right from experience.

A REALTOR® with experience is PRICELESS. A REALTOR® is well worth the money that you don’t pay. We can save you from losing money, there are many things that can go wrong (“Time is of the Essence”) in a contract, which means you make one mistake, miss a date on contract it can cause the contract to be terminated and can lose your Ernest Deposit Money which can be devastated to any buyer especially a first time home buyer.

A REALTOR® job is to protect you to the best of their ability, look out for your best interest, be loyal to you, provide you with all material facts that could influence your decision(s), follow your lawful instructions, keep confidential information confidential and to help you negotiate the best price.

Here are some things you may not be aware of: in just one purchase transaction:

  1. There are nearly 300 communications that takes place between, the seller(s), agents, attorney, lender, inspectors, insurance companies, surveyors, appraisers with emails, text, faxes and phone calls.
  2. Nearly 400 documents/pages, all of which have significant consequences if you don’t fully understand.
  3. Review of documents/Insure accuracy: Offer to Purchase and Contract, HOA documents (covenants & restrictions), Loan package, Addendums, Property Disclosure Statements, Attorney documents, Review the final financial statement (HUD-1) to insure you get every penny that is due you.
  4. Coordinate all events: starting making appointment to show properties, home and termite inspections, surveyors, appraisers, repairs to be done, closings. The list goes on of probable unforeseen things that may come and they do come up that needs to be handle to keep everything running smooth and to help prevent the contract from being terminated.
  5. If the purchase transaction doesn’t close it can be devastating to all parties involved in the transaction. There is consist communication with the lender and the attorney.

It is the REALTOR®’s job in represent the buyer to accomplish all of the above and to do what’s best for the buyer and it doesn’t cost the buyer one penny.

Bottom line.... Get a REALTOR® to represent you, I course I would hope you choose me but whether you choose me or another REALTOR®, get yourself a REALTOR®, after all purchasing a home is not something you do every day, twice a year or even once a year. We do, it’s all we do every day, all day.

As for New Construction:

A common misconception when purchasing new construction is that you don’t need a

REALTOR®. Ask any sales agent working for the builder and the answer you'll get (guaranteed) is that you don't need a REALTOR®, they can take care of everything. This may be true but it doesn't get you personal representation that all buyers should expect and have.

A good question to ask is, "Who will represent me?" Now the answers come down to, "We will...." Think about it, these representatives are employed by and responsible to the builder. Why would someone believe that the potential for a "conflict of interest" doesn't exist?

Case in point, "Do I need an inspection?" The answers provided by the builder is, no, we inspect and do several reviews of the property before you take ownership and you have a "full one year warranty" that covers w, x, y, & z.

Any REALTOR® representing you will tell you that you should have a personal structural inspection conducted even with new construction. Some of the issues identified with our new construction inspections include: missing roof tile, black mold in the attic, sealed vents, faulty smoke detectors, wiring violations, foundation, structure issues, etc. These are the types of problems that the normal home owner may not identify for years beyond the warranty. Now who benefits from being told that an inspection is not necessary?

When buying new construction, having a REALTOR® that represents you personally is a huge benefit from negotiations, asking important questions, monitoring the building process, etc.  The choice is yours, but wouldn't it make sense to protect yourself with personal representation?

Also make sure your REALTOR® accompanies you on EVERY first visit of new builder viewings, as the builders will not take kindly if you view their models without your agent and you may lose your agents representation if you decide to purchase from them.
Choose an experienced REALTOR® when working with new home builders, because every builder is different and each situation is unique, you want someone on your side guiding you step by step through the process and making sure the builder is doing their part in the transaction.

One last comment: It is a common misconception that not using a REALTOR® when buying new construction will save you money. Builders have their fee to the REALTOR® budgeted separately from the house price. So it’s not costing you in the price of the house.

When a buyer does not use a Buyer agent (REALTOR®), the builder pays their sale represented a higher commission, pockets the saving or throws it into their marketing budget.

So instead of asking yourself, “Why should I use a REALTOR®?” the real question is,

“Why wouldn’t you hire a REALTOR®?” At no cost to you, hiring an agent will save you

time today and money tomorrow.

The decision is yours, I'd be honored for the chance to help you. Please call or e-mail me for an appointment that's easy and convenient for you. Thanks for stopping by. I'm looking forward to hearing from you.

Mundy Bringuier, Broker/REALTOR®

PS: Hablo Espanol