A Home Of Your Own
Finding The Right Home
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Home Search Advice
Home Viewing Advice
Buying Your Home
Contract To Closing
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Finding The Right Home
How To Find The Right Home.
Finding the right home can be both tedious and challenging if not done properly, resulting in a drawn out process that takes far too long with unnecessary stress. My goal is to simplify and streamline this as much as possible and ensure you get the right house for you and your family. By following the steps I believe we can accomplish this together:
The House Hunting Process.
- Define your housing criteria. This should be the MINIMUM features you’re looking for out of a house – in other words your “Must Haves”. Your “prefer to haves” and “nice to haves” will come later as we move further into the process but for now focus on the minimum. Criteria should include location, price range, and the minimum features you cannot live without – meaning if the house doesn’t have “X” there’s no point in even looking at it. In most instances, you should have no more than 3 – 4 minimum requirements beyond price & location.
- Once you start looking at houses online, begin filtering through by selecting a subset of homes that look interesting based on their price, location, description, pictures, and features identified. See the HOME SEARCH ADVICE section for additional info on finding homes.
- If you’re unfamiliar with the neighborhood or area, drive by the exterior of this subset of homes to verify both the exterior and neighborhood meet your satisfaction. This will establish the list of houses you’d like to view on the inside. The reason for this step is simple — you’re not just purchasing a home but an entire neighborhood; if that neighborhood fails to meet your expectations there’s little point in viewing its interior.
- Send me the addresses or MLS #’s with a good day/time for us to view. It is customary to provide at least 24 hours-notice so the seller can have the home ready and be out of the home during your showing.
- Myself, or my assistant, will set up appointments with the Listing Agent(s). When we go out for our first round of showings think of this round as the “elimination round” – eliminate any homes that don’t work for you regardless of reason. Identify those still “in the running” and create a Short List. In addition to being systematic, by using this first round as the “elimination round” it relieves the pressure of finding “The House” the first time you walk through it.
- A key concept I’ve learned over the years is that finding the right home is as much a process of elimination as it is a process of selection. There are thousands of homes on the market at any point in time. So eliminating those that don’t work for you narrows the list to a manageable number and allows you to focus on what is truly important. That is also the purpose of creating the Short List — it allows you to keep your options manageable while relieving the pressure of having to choose “the home” after just one 15 minute walk through. The Short List can and likely will change over time as we view more homes. A home that was once short listed may later be eliminated because other homes surpass it. Ideally the Short List will contain somewhere between 3 – 5 homes. Anything more and it becomes too unwieldy – remember these should be limited to the best of the best and are to be seriously considered for your next home.
- Once we have viewed enough homes and you’re comfortable with what is available on the market we will revisit the Short List for a 2nd showing of each home. This back-to-back-to-back approach allows you to do a true compare and contrast and ideally make a more informed decision. It also allows you to see each home a 2nd time where you will invariably see new things that you didn’t see the first time through.
Be sure to talk to Ted Weaver about where you want to live and the things that are most important to you. While buyers frequently use the Internet to gain access to listings or available properties for sale, Ted will bring value to the entire home buying process by analyzing available data, answering questions, sharing his professional expertise, and handling all the paperwork and legwork required of any real estate transaction.
It’s also important to consider the type of home that suits you best. Do you need a condominium or a townhome? What’s the difference? New construction or resale? Ranch v 2-Story; Split Level or Split Foyer? All have benefits and downsides which are generally determined by your individual circumstances so be sure to go over these criteria with Ted.