by Dan Wolf
on Thursday, October 3rd, 2013 at 9:34am.
Whether you've done it before or it's your first time, home-buying can be exciting because you get the chance to reinvent your living situation. It can also be stressful because you don't know if you're making the right decision. To make the process go as smoothly as possible, you want to avoid the following common mistakes.
Not getting prequalified. You don't look for a house that you want, and then find out if you can afford it. That's like going to a restaurant and leaving your wallet at home. Start the buying process by getting prequalified at a mortgage broker or bank, who will tell you what price range fits your budget and down payment. You can then spend time looking only at houses in that range.
Falling in love with a house. The kitchen may be your dream, the master bedroom what you've always wanted, and the house the perfect size for your family. But don't let the seller agent know that or you'll weaken your bargaining position. The most you should ever reveal is casual interest. Always remember that there are lots of “perfect” houses out there.
Settling for 100 percent. You'll never get anything on your wish list. So decide on a couple of must-haves and a couple of deal-breakers, and put everything else in your nice-to-have pile. If you're getting 75 percent of what you want, you're doing well. In a seller's market, you may have to settle for less unless you're willing to spend more.
Not using professional help. We're a little biased with this warning. But buying real estate is a complex process with myriad forms, regulations, and financial standards. It's difficult enough to keep track of these requirements if you're a professional. If you're an amateur going-it-alone, it's nearly impossible. So spare yourself some trouble. Contact us today to see how we can help you with home buying.