Steps to Take When You’re Ready to Buy a Home

Want to transform your homeownership dream into a reality? Understanding what it takes to enter the real estate market successfully is paramount for homebuyers. With the necessary preparation, you should have no trouble purchasing your dream residence.

Ultimately, there are several steps that a homebuyer should take before he or she conducts a home search, including:

1. Perform Plenty of Housing Market Research

The housing market fluctuates regularly, and a buyer’s market can change into a seller’s market quickly. As such, you’ll want to conduct sufficient real estate market research before you start your home search so you can streamline the process of finding the perfect house.

Consider where you want to live and whether you’d like to reside close to family members and friends. Also, consider how much space you’ll need from a new home, along with whether you’d like to live near schools, playgrounds and other local hot spots.

Don’t forget to check out the prices of a wide range of homes, either. By doing so, you may be able to determine the price range for houses that match your needs.

2. Get Pre-Approved for a Mortgage

With pre-approval for a mortgage, you’ll know exactly what you can afford as soon as you’re ready to buy a house.

Banks and credit unions frequently offer a vast array of home financing options, making it simple for you to choose a mortgage that fits your budget. Fixed- and adjustable-rate mortgages are among the most popular choices for homebuyers nationwide. Meanwhile, you may be eligible for Federal Housing Administration (FHA) or U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) loans as well.

Reach out to multiple banks and credit unions to pursue all of the home financing options at your disposal. This will enable you to find the best mortgage based on your individual needs and enter the housing market with financing in hand to secure your dream home.

3. Hire an Experienced Real Estate Agent

There is no reason to enter the housing market alone. Lucky for you, experienced real estate agents are happy to help you find the perfect house.

An experienced real estate agent understands the ins and outs of the housing market and will share his or her real estate expertise with you. This professional will educate you about the real estate market and ensure that you know what to look for when you attend an open house.

Also, an experienced real estate agent will guide you along the homebuying journey. From the moment you spot your dream home to the day you finalize a purchase agreement, your real estate agent will offer the support that you need to go from homebuyer to homeowner.

Perhaps best of all, an experienced real estate agent will help alleviate your homebuying concerns. And if you ever have homebuying questions, your real estate agent will provide responses at any time.

Don’t settle for a subpar home – follow the aforementioned steps, and you can move closer to discovering your ideal residence.

Best Home Building Products And Practices

Green building or the practice of building better homes using processes that are environmentally responsible and resource-efficient promotes resource conservation through energy efficiency and water conservation. This practice complements and expands the traditional builder design concerns of durability, utility, economy and comfort.

In the regions, where summer heat can be horrific and fierce winter winds are sure to blow, many new homebuilding contractors incorporate eco-friendly techniques, practices and products to create a healthy and comfortable home that promotes energy efficiency and reduces operation and maintenance costs. Green building practices do not necessarily increase the original construction cost. However, they do lower operating cost over the lifetime of the structure.

Today, designers, architects, and home building contractors are “raising the bar,” setting new standards in upscale home construction. The latest advances in Internet technology and the ready available of wireless communication have given birth to a treasure chest of “smart home” amenities that serve to enhance green building practices and products.

Cutting Heating And Cooling Costs

Reducing the overall operational energy your home consumes for cooling, heating, lighting, ventilation, appliances and equipment during its life is a worthy goal. Not only do you save money and quickly recoup your original investment, but you also help reduce your carbon impact on the environment and do your part to protect the planet. Real estate market research shows that, when and if you get ready to sell your home, an energy-efficient smart home sells faster and at a higher price than a comparable property without green building and smart home energy conserving amenities.

Installing extra insulation above the regions minimum building codes is a wise investment that pays for its self over a very short amount of time and then continues to pay a return on investment over the lifetime of the home. Known in the building trade as “Super Insulation” refers to the amount of insulation material needed to maintain heating costs at 33 percent or more than conventional methods.

Summer Home Cooling Solutions

During the brutally hot days of late summer, a sprinkler system installed on the roof ridge can envelope the entire home is a cloud of cooling mist. Electronically controlled with a smart home app, rooftop sprinklers can operate on automatic temperature control signals, or activate anytime with a click of an app. Working with your architect and builder, the same sprinkler system can be installed to provide a fine cooling mist to patios and pool decks.

Water Conservation

Water conserving plumbing fixtures use less water and do the same task without compromising performance while reducing water use and therefore water bills.

No matter the size of your budget or the scope of your building plans, it is important to research green building products and practices, as well as the latest innovations in smart home technology. While all the options may not apply to your situation, you are sure to find several amenities to enhance comfort and save home operational costs.

 

 

What to Look For During a Home Showing

A home showing represents a great opportunity for prospective homebuyers, as it enables homebuyers to get an up-close look at a residence and determine whether to make an offer on it.

As such, it is important to prep for a home showing; otherwise, a homebuyer could miss out on a golden opportunity to find the right residence at the right time.

So what should you look for during a home showing? Here are three factors that every homebuyer needs to consider:

1. A Home’s Exterior

Although the home you’re visiting caught your eye as you drove past it in your car, you may notice problems when you take a closer look at the residence’s exterior.

For instance, cracks or chips in the driveway or along the front steps may need to be repaired and may impact the amount that you offer for a residence – or whether you decide to submit an offer at all.

Of course, no home showing would be complete without checking out the condition of the house’s siding and roof, either.

If you’re uncertain about the condition of these areas, be sure to ask the home seller’s real estate agent for more information. By doing so, you can make a more informed decision about whether a particular residence is right for you.

2. A Home’s Heating and Cooling System

Ideally, you’ll want a house that stays warm in winter and cool in summer. But in many cases, an old heating or cooling system may prevent a homeowner from maintaining comfortable temperatures inside a house at all times.

Ask about the age of a heating and cooling system during a home showing. This will allow you to find out if this system will need to be replaced or repaired in the immediate future.

Find out about the efficiency rating of a house’s heating and cooling system as well. Remember, the higher a heating or cooling system’s efficiency rating, the more this unit will be able to save a homeowner on his or her monthly energy costs. And if you find a home that boasts a high-efficiency heating and cooling system, you may be able to save money on your energy bills down the line.

3. A Home’s Doors and Windows

Do a home’s doors and windows open freely? If not, they may be in need of serious repair, which ultimately could put a major dent in your wallet if you decide to purchase a particular residence.

The costs to repair or replace defective doors and windows can add up quickly. Thus, you’ll want to ensure that all of a house’s doors and windows are in great condition before you purchase a residence, and you can learn more about their condition during a home showing.

When it comes to finding the right house, you’ll always want to consult with a reliable real estate agent, too. Your real estate agent is readily available to assist you in any way possible, and he or she will be able to help you discover a top-notch house that meets all of your needs.

Spend some time getting ready for home showings, and you’ll be prepared to find an excellent home that you can enjoy for years to come.

Before You Buy

Buying a home is a very important decision. Before you rush into a home you should consider all the factors.
Making sure you end up with the right home involves figuring out exactly what features you need, want and don’t want in a home. Before starting your search, you should make a “wish list” to decide which features are absolutely essential, which nice “extras” are if you happen to find them, and which are completely undesirable.

The more specific you can be about what you’re looking for from the outset, the more effective your home search will be. Also keep in mind, that in the end, every home purchase is a compromise.

Create your own personalized “wish list” and when you’re finished filling it out; share it with your real estate agent.

Become an educated buyer

•The web is one of the best ways to search for homes today. With this website, you can receive daily emails with new and updated listings from the towns and price range of your choice.
•Search the entire MLS for all homes, condos, land, multi family, commercial properties, and past sold properties at your convenience.
•View full listing sheets showing amenities, taxes, lot sizes, beds, baths, rooms, siding, fireplaces, garages, room sizes and much more.
•Get property addresses and see where the properties are located on MapQuest.
•Check schools and community profiles of your preferred towns.
•Save preferred listings in your own file to view anytime.
•Calculate approximate mortgage payments for specific properties.

Home Inspection

Once you have made an offer on a home, you will need to schedule a home inspection, conducted by an independent authorized inspector. It is extremely important to hire a reputable inspector so that you know exactly what you are buying. Do not hesitate to ask friends, family, and co-workers for advice. If you are satisfied with the results of the inspection, then you can proceed with the sale. If the inspector finds problems with the property, you may want to negotiate with the seller to lower the price, or to pay for certain repairs.

Appraisal

Your lender may require you to get an appraisal of the house you want to buy, to make sure it is worth the money that you are borrowing. You may select your own appraiser, or you may ask your real estate broker to help you with this task.

Homeowner’s Insurance

Lenders require that you have homeowners insurance, to protect both your interests and theirs. Like everything else, be sure to shop around for insurance that fits your needs.
Settlement or Closing

Finally Make Sure Before you Buy

Finally, you are ready for the closing. Be sure to read everything before you sign! You should have both your real estate broker and an attorney present at the closing to ensure that all is in order.