5 Tips to Finding a Great Home

Posted by on Friday, August 27th, 2010 at 3:35pm.

By Marc Rasmussen – LuxurySarasotaRealEstate.com

Now is probably a pretty good time to be a home buyer. No one can tell you for sure if the real estate market has bottomed out but prices are much lower now than they were in 2005. Real estate has gone back to be a long term investment. The days are over where you can buy a house and flip it for a huge profit within a short period of time. The primary purpose of buying a home now is to have a place of your own to create memories, enjoy life, raise a family etc. The main motivation to buy should not be to get rich. Unless you like sleeping on park benches you have to live somewhere. It is just a question of whether you want to rent or own.

Here are 5 tips to finding a great home

1) Manage your expectations – We all want that $500,000 home for $300,000 but a discount like that just won’t happen (aside from the rare exception). Don’t expect to find it. A friend of mine scours my area for great deals. In the last 12 months he has purchased 2 homes. Both for around $50,000 and he flipped them for just over $100,000 each. Keep in mind though that he looks for deals all day long every day of the week. He has to sniff them out and it requires a lot of work.  The real estate market is pretty efficient so properties sell for about what they are worth.

2) Be Prepared – The first thing you need to do is get prepared. Let’s say a smoking hot deal comes up and you have not been pre-approved for a mortgage and  buyer #2 has arranged financing. With all else equal who do you think the seller wants to work with? Most likely buyer #2. Get pre-approved for financing or be prepared to show proof of funds.

3) Work with a great Realtor – The home buying process can be much easier if you are working with an experienced, professional Realtor. New agents that are hard working can be great to work with as well.  In a nutshell don’t work with a lazy, unknowledgeable agent.

4) Learn the real estate market – When a great home at a great price comes on the market how will you know it is a great price if you do not know the market? You most likely won’t. Sit down with your Realtor, establish a budget and make a list of the neighborhoods and areas that you like best.  Take a look at what is for sale in those areas as well as what has recently sold. This will give a good understand of the market. When a good deal comes on the market you can now identify that it is a good deal.

5) Be quick – Don’t assume because you read in the newspaper that the real estate market is bad that you can take your time in viewing new listings. When something comes on the market get over to look at it as fast as you can. Most sellers overprice their homes from day one but occasionally a seller is smart and prices it right on the first day. Be sure to find that seller before anyone else.

Follow these 5 tips and you stand a better chance of a finding a great home at a great price.

22 Responses to "5 Tips to Finding a Great Home"

Jaiden Scott wrote: Very good post bringing in a number of influences and points of view. Nice tips! This post was well worth the read. Indeed it is rather interesting for me to read this article. Thank you for it. I like such topics and everything connected to this matter. I would like to read more on that blog soon.


Posted on Wednesday, September 1st, 2010 at 8:19am.

Salt Lake Homes wrote: What i like in this post is that it gives you a wide spectrum of how to figure out things when you are finding great homes in the real estate market. Really an informative post! Keep it up!

Posted on Wednesday, September 1st, 2010 at 8:19am.

Rachael with Atlanta Insurance wrote: Excellent Post. All to often we get caught up in the excitement of buying a new home and don't think about what we really want and need in the process. it's the little things. Have a great Realtor helps keep you "grounded" and is there for YOUR best interest! Great post- thanks! :)

Rachael with Lloyd Pro Group Insurance

Posted on Wednesday, September 1st, 2010 at 9:30am.

Lisa Udy wrote: The biggest key is to listen to the Realtor you hired. The news may be spouting that you can get a great deal, but most sellers today are priced as low as they can go. Base offers off of comps, not what the newspapers tell you to write.

Posted on Friday, September 3rd, 2010 at 9:40am.

Property Marbella wrote: Hi Tina,
Learn also too inspects homes, control water and pipe system, electric, isolation (buy an energy camera or a thermo camera) ect.. so you don’t think you buy a cheap home, who then is going to cost you a fortune to repair.

Posted on Saturday, September 4th, 2010 at 10:50am.

David wrote: I think these are some great ideas. I still think when bought right, like any investment, it will make you money. When else would be a better time to buy something than now, knowing that the best way to buy is buy low and sell high. It will be a matter of time when the market does change and when it does it will be something that will once again make a lot of people feel good about their investment.

Posted on Wednesday, September 8th, 2010 at 1:43pm.

Round Rock Apartments wrote: That's a nice, succinct little guide that every new home buyer could use. I would also add that it's important to find a Realtor you really trust and can have a good feeling about. Don't just pick one out of the phone book but instead talk to people you know and find out their experiences with their Realtors and you may just find someone who already has "rave reviews".

Posted on Wednesday, September 8th, 2010 at 1:43pm.

Russell Volk wrote: I completely agree with the guide. It's a great overview that every home buyer should read. Lots of great tips and expert advice.

I also suggest that when the buyer is looking at a property, they need to really envision themselves living there. If something doesn't feel right, move on to the next house.

Great post!

Posted on Sunday, September 12th, 2010 at 2:39pm.

Flower Mound MLS wrote: I like to call it dollar cost averaging. Buy low and sell high. I think it is a great time for investors to be buying a home. Interest rates are low and rental income is high because of the demand.

Posted on Sunday, September 12th, 2010 at 2:39pm.

Susan wrote: One of the problems is that people read in magazines or books and hear on television about how they can get a great deal in any market and save thousands as long as they are willing to haggle. Infomercials are some of the biggest offenders and the fact is that not all markets support haggling.

Right now we are in an economy where the banks own the vast majority of homes that are being listed and they don't want to negotiate. They just want to find out what the house is worth and get an offer for that amount so they can clear out their inventory. Attempting to talk the bank down can be an unfortunate mistake because they reserve the right to accept other offers while the buyer is busy counter offering. It's sad, but I've seen clients lose their dream house because they were trying to save just $1,000.

I hope that buyers understand that we, as their agents, want them to get the best deal possible. If we could find a way to give every one of our clients a deep discount, we would do it, but instead we just tell them the facts so they don't lose their dream home when the offer comes in.

Posted on Sunday, September 12th, 2010 at 2:39pm.

giselle@roofing estimates charlotte wrote: I agree with these helpful tips. However, first things first, as a realltor, one should define and be aware on the buyer's budget.

Posted on Sunday, September 12th, 2010 at 2:39pm.

Mesa Homes For Sale wrote: This is a great post. You managed to sum up a huge range of important ideas in a n easy to manage kind of way.
Thanks for sharing this!

Posted on Monday, September 13th, 2010 at 12:41pm.

Buy Flowers wrote: Great tips. These can be very useful for those who are interested in buying houses. A buy low and sell high idea sounds really nice as well. Hiring a great Realtor can also be of a huge help because a Realtor apparently knows a lot about estate planning.

Posted on Monday, September 27th, 2010 at 8:49am.

Jennifer Hart wrote: Thanks for a very informative blog. I agree with your words of wisdom, especially to be prepared AND work with a knowldgeable Realtor. I've talked to too many people (now clients) who are worried about what they read in the media and are now very happy with their home.

Posted on Monday, September 27th, 2010 at 8:49am.

Steve Baker wrote: If every potential home buyer and seller were prepared like you suggest, it would be a great experience for everyone.
Good tips-thanks.

Posted on Monday, September 27th, 2010 at 8:49am.

Maggie wrote: You have a great list here.. I totally agree with your your number 5 tip. You can buy a great house in a right price is you look at it right away. You should not waste a single minute because you might miss the blessings.

Posted on Monday, September 27th, 2010 at 8:49am.

Roch S wrote: I would place working with a REALTOR first as they normally point you in the right direction to achieve all the other steps.

Posted on Monday, September 27th, 2010 at 8:49am.

Chicago Luxury Real Estate wrote: This is a good news for real estate investors and buyers. It means life is picking up after a hard days.

Posted on Monday, September 27th, 2010 at 8:49am.

Alex Cortez wrote: Good points, Marc. People think that they can get a foreclosure for pennies on the dollar. Properties priced below market value are sold relatively quick, so finding phenomenal deals are more an exception rather than the rule (even in a down, volatile market).

Posted on Wednesday, October 6th, 2010 at 10:27am.

Chris wrote: Thanks for the great tips. I hope all the home seekers and real estate agents should read this post.As we have a tight economy every one should care in investing money in real estate.

Posted on Monday, October 11th, 2010 at 9:53am.

Mary Osawa wrote: Of all the five, i think working with a great realtor makes or breaks you. There's nothing better than the trust between realtor and client to make the deal work.

Posted on Wednesday, October 20th, 2010 at 8:36am.

M. Rogers wrote: Google has started showing properties for sale on Maps now; you can get the exact location of the property along with other details instantly. Try it.

Posted on Tuesday, January 25th, 2011 at 9:02am.

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