Paul Stonkus' Blog
For those who are on the lookout for a great house, it may be beneficial to explore homes in small towns. In fact, there are many reasons to pursue a small town residence, and these include:
1. You can avoid the hustle and bustle of big city living.
Purchasing a house in the city may prove to be difficult. In many instances, competition for houses near city attractions and landmarks is fierce. Also, owning a home in the city may require you to pay high costs for taxes, parking and more.
Comparatively, small town living often provides a breath of fresh air, particularly for those who want to avoid the hustle and bustle of a big city. Small town homes are available in a variety of sizes and styles. Perhaps best of all, purchasing a small town house typically won't force you to break your budget.
2. You can live close to loved ones.
If family members and friends live in a small town, it may be beneficial to join them. And if you kick off a search for a home in the small town of your choice, you can live near loved ones.
Of course, prior to starting a small town home search, you may want to learn about the local housing market. If you possess housing market data and insights, you can tailor your property buying strategy accordingly.
3. You can find a superior house at a budget-friendly price.
Small town homes may be more affordable than their big city counterparts. Therefore, a buyer who wants to find the best value for a home may want to narrow his or her house search to properties in small towns.
When it comes to searching for a small town home, there are lots of exceptional options available across the United States. As such, determining exactly where to pursue a small town home sometimes can be challenging.
Thankfully, hiring a real estate agent is a viable option for all buyers, at all times. A real estate agent can teach a buyer about the housing market in any small town. By doing so, this housing market professional can help a buyer take the guesswork out of finding and purchasing a small town residence.
A real estate agent is happy to provide plenty of assistance at each stage of the property buying journey. He or she will set up small town home showings and keep a buyer up to date about properties that match this individual's criteria. Plus, if a buyer finds his or her ideal small town residence, a real estate agent will help this individual submit a competitive offer to purchase.
For those who want to pursue a small town residence, there is no reason to work alone. If you hire a real estate agent today, you can receive extensive support as you conduct a search for a home in the small town of your choice.
There is no need to struggle as you pursue your dream home. In fact, there are many things you can do to ensure the homebuying journey is quick and easy.
Now, let's take a look at three tips to help you enjoy a seamless property buying experience.
1. Know Where You Want to Reside
It often helps to narrow a home search to a small group of cities and towns. That way, you can focus exclusively on residences in a set area and speed up your house search.
As you consider where you want to live, it generally is a good idea to review your short- and long-term plans. For example, if you intend to return to school soon, you may want to search for houses near some of the nation's top colleges and universities. On the other hand, if you want to start a family, you may want to focus on homes close to parks and other family-friendly attractions.
2. Establish a Homebuying Budget
Most homebuyers will need to get a mortgage so they can acquire their dream residence. Fortunately, banks and credit unions are happy to teach you about home financing and help you make an informed mortgage selection.
Typically, banks and credit unions employ courteous, knowledgeable mortgage specialists who can educate you about all aspects of home financing. These specialists are ready to respond to your home financing concerns and questions and help you find a mortgage that suits you perfectly.
There is no such thing as a "bad" question to ask mortgage specialists, either. If you work with mortgage specialists to assess all of your home financing options, you can select a mortgage that will serve you well for the foreseeable future.
3. Hire a Real Estate Agent
When it comes to searching for a home, you don't have to work alone. Thankfully, real estate agents are available throughout the country, and these housing market professionals can make it simple for you to acquire a great home at a budget-friendly price.
A real estate agent goes above and beyond the call of duty to make the property buying journey fast and easy. First, he or she will learn about you and your homebuying goals. This housing market professional next will craft a personalized homebuying strategy for you and put this plan into action. Then, after you discover your ideal residence, a real estate agent will do everything possible to help you acquire this home.
In addition, a real estate agent will work with you to finalize a home purchase. As a home closing date approaches, a real estate agent will help you plan accordingly. By doing so, he or she can help you purchase your dream residence without delay.
For those who want to enjoy a quick, easy homebuying journey, it helps to plan ahead. With the aforementioned tips, you can prepare for the homebuying journey and limit the risk of encountering various problems as you search for your ideal house.
Are you an experienced homebuyer? If so, you may be better equipped than others to enjoy a quick, worry-free homebuying experience.
Ultimately, a veteran homebuyer can learn a lot from his or her past experiences, including:
1. How to Avoid Paying Too Much for a House
The housing market offers many opportunities for veteran and first-time homebuyers alike. However, a first-time homebuyer may struggle to pounce at an opportunity to acquire a top-notch house at a budget-friendly price. On the other hand, an experienced homebuyer likely knows what it takes to acquire a house at a price that matches or surpasses his or her expectations.
As an experienced homebuyer, it generally helps to think about how you narrowed your price range when you most recently searched for a home. This experience may guide you as you look to establish a price range for an upcoming house search.
Furthermore, a veteran homebuyer may know exactly what types of housing market data to examine before entering the real estate market. By evaluating the prices of recently sold houses and available residences in cities and towns where you'd like to live, you can use assorted real estate market data to accelerate your home search.
2. How to Get Home Financing
If you struggled to get a mortgage for your first home, there is no need to deal with home financing problems once again. Instead, a veteran homebuyer can allocate the necessary time and resources to get pre-approved for a mortgage and enter the housing market with a budget in hand.
To receive pre-approval for a mortgage, it usually is a good idea to meet with various banks and credit unions. These financial institutions can educate you about myriad mortgage options and help you select the ideal mortgage based on your homebuying needs.
3. How to Differentiate a Buyer's Market from a Seller's Market
Regardless of whether you previously bought a house in a buyer's or seller's market, you can use your past homebuying experience to help you assess the current state of the housing sector. Then, you can map out your homebuying journey accordingly.
If you notice houses are selling quickly at prices above their initial asking figures, you may be preparing to enter a seller's market. In this scenario, you may need to act quickly to acquire a great house.
Comparatively, if you find that homes are lingering on the housing market for many weeks or months, a buyer's market may be in place. In a buyer's market, you may be able to purchase a stellar house at a discounted price due to the sheer volume of houses that are available.
Before you launch a home search, it is important to note that even a veteran homebuyer may need help at times. If you hire a real estate agent, you can receive expert support throughout the homebuying journey. In fact, this housing market professional will make it easy for you to discover a superb house in no time at all.
With closing day rapidly approaching, you're almost to the finish line of your home purchase. However, before you complete your home purchase, you will need to conduct a final walk-through of the property.
Ultimately, a final walk-through offers a valuable opportunity to identify any last-minute problems with a residence. If you encounter any issues during a final walk-through, you can ensure that the seller can correct these problems prior to a home closing.
Preparing for a final walk-through is key. Lucky for you, we're here to help you get ready for a final walk-through so that you can complete a successful home purchase.
Now, let's take a look at three tips to help you prep for a final walk-through.
1. Avoid a Closing Day Walk-Through
When it comes to a final walk-through, it pays to be cautious. Thus, you should give yourself plenty of time to set up a final walk-through. This will allow you to avoid the dangers associated with finding home problems on the same day as a house closing.
Try to schedule your final walk-through at least a few days before you close on a residence. That way, if you discover problems with a house, you can ask the seller to respond to these issues and reduce the risk of a home closing delay.
2. Keep an Eye Out for the Seller's Leftover Belongings
A final walk-through gives you an opportunity to view a house that is virtually empty. But if you find that a seller has left behind various belongings, you should not hesitate to ask the seller to remove his or her possessions.
Furthermore, a home seller should leave a house in "broom-swept" condition; this means a home's walls, floors and other surfaces should be dust- and dirt-free. If you find trash and other debris in a home, you can ask the seller to clean the property.
3. Be Ready to Test All Appliances
A homebuyer may acquire a refrigerator, washer, dryer and other appliances as part of a home purchase. These items often are expensive to replace, and as such, you'll want to make sure they work properly during a final walk-through.
If an appliance does not perform as required, you have the right to request that the seller repair or replace the appliance. Or, you may be able to receive financial compensation for the defective appliance.
When it comes to prepping for a final walk-through, there is no reason to work alone. Fortunately, if you collaborate with an expert real estate agent, you can receive plenty of support in the days leading up to a home closing.
In addition to providing homebuying assistance, a top-notch real estate agent is happy to attend a final walk-through. By doing so, this housing market professional can help you identify any potential home problems and resolve such issues as quickly as possible.
Plan ahead for a final walk-through, and you can avoid the risk of discovering assorted home problems after you close on a residence.
Finding your new home is an exciting new prospect, and you want to ensure you get the home you really want. Before you start your home-search take some time to thoroughly consider what you want and need out of a home, what you want it to look like and what features you desire in your neighborhood and the surrounding area. To get you started, here are some pointers for creating your ideal home checklist.
- Basic Requirements. What do you need in a house? Take inventory of your household needs and belongings to determine your basic desires, outside of the obvious roof over your head, running water and electricity. If you have multiple children, do you want them to have their own rooms? Do they need a bathroom they can share? Does your elderly parent live with you and need a ground floor room with easy access to the kitchen and living spaces? Maybe you’re a single professional or young couple focused on starting a new business, so space for a home office or workshop is at the top of the list. Number of rooms, bathrooms, size of the yard, features and layout of the kitchen, storage space and number, size or openness of living areas are all things to consider when developing your needs list.
- Desires. What do you want in a house? Separating needs and wants can be difficult when dreaming of your new home. Start with the big and more obvious ones, like a pool or built-in barbecue, crown molding or a chef’s kitchen. You can add many features that you want after the fact. You can install a pool, replace the sliding door with French doors and even add your own crown molding. Setting aside some wants initially can open up your budget to purchasing a home that you can then invest more funds in and install most of the features you want. If you’re not interested in putting additional work into the house once you move in it is helpful to see what features bring up the cost of your new home so you can start thinking about what you can live without when it comes down to crunching numbers and staying within your means.
- Take it or leave it. You have your list now consider what items you entirely can’t live without (from the want or need category) and what you can be more flexible on. Unless you’re building a home from scratch with the perfect budget to boot, you will have to be flexible when searching for your home. Not every house will have every single feature on your list. Is it the master bath with his and her sinks that you need? Is it a big yard with a tree perfect for your kid’s treehouse, or is it a multi-story home with den and living room that are your most sought-after features? Finally, determine which features to keep on the list to help with future resale value, even if they aren’t on your initial needs or wants lists.
- Resale Potential. The things you aren’t thinking of. Where does potential resale value fit into your overall home buying plan? You might love a home with vintage French windows, but a house with dual-pane windows might add more value to the home when you try to sell it later. Maybe you don’t care about hardwood floors, or you aren’t thinking about ample built-in storage space, but your future buyers are, and you have the opportunity to invest now in added value later. When you review your ideal home checklist with your real estate agent ask for advice on how your needs and preferences align with a future resale.
Before you start your home search or dive too deep into online listings work with your real estate agent to hammer out your ideal home checklist. Once you know what you desire in a home start working with your agent to find the best area for you to live in, read on to part two of this article to create your ideal neighborhood checklist.