Spring House Hunting Tips!
Flowers are budding and the bees are buzzing. Spring is in the air and it’s that time of year where it pays to be the early bird who gets the worm. just as the cycle of nature ebbs and flows with hot summers falling into chilly winters and then rejuvenating into the warm Spring sunshine so does the real estate market. There are certain ideal windows for buying and selling, Spring being at the forefront, and it is important to know how to what to do to be ready when that time of year rolls around.
When you find yourself as a potential buyer, you want to make sure you have all your ducks in a row before setting out on the arduous task of finding a home. Be at east, however, as there are several things you can do on the front-end to make house hunting this Spring a breeze. From financial security to arming yourself with the most up to date market data available, buyers today are more prepared than ever to traverse the ever changing waters of the real estate market.
Here are a few simple tips to help you on your house hunting adventures:
Be Ready – Financially
If you are serious about looking for a home, the absolute best thing you can do financially is to hold off big capital purchases like new cars or opening up new lines of credit. According to Freemont Bank a crucial bargaining chip when it comes time to make an offer will be debt-to-income ratio. This magic number is what will tell lenders the monthly mortgage you can afford. The lower your debt-to-income ratio, the higher amount lenders will be willing to give you. You also want to establish a track record of stability, so another key is to avoid changing jobs or moving around large sums of money before applying for a home loan.
Have a Checklist
Before you even schedule any potential property visits with your real estate agent, make sure you have a list of pros and cons on what you are looking for. Just having a list of basic needs like neighborhood, school zoning, number of bathrooms, mature trees on the lot or even covered parking can make all the difference when whirlwind tours start to blend together in your exhausted mind. Keep tabs on what you liked and didn’t like about each property and how they stood up to your checklist.
Consider an Escalation Clause
This is an advanced tip for buyers, but it is an effective one none-the-less. If you find a property that fits everything you are looking for and you see it as a “can’t miss” opportunity, don’t be afraid to keep power moves in mind. You can sweeten the pot for any potential seller and show them just how serious you are by adding escalation clauses to your offer. This escalation clause acts as a buffer to whatever dollar amount you present to the seller.
The folks over at LearnVe$T had a similar example saying that if you had an escalation clause of $2,000 to a bid of $150,000, and if a second offer comes in at $155,000 – your initial bid gets jumped to $157,000. This is a smart business decision on two fronts. First, it puts you in prime position to acquire the property you desire, but it also deflates the chances of getting locked into a bidding war where you put excess cash on the table that might not be needed to actually win the contract. It’s a safe, smart way to out-bid your competition.