Pave the Way to Success Before You Ever Contact a Real Estate Agent
Entering the housing market can be both exciting and daunting. Whether you’re buying or selling a home, there are a couple of key points that help pave the way toward a fast and successful transaction. Before you ever call your real estate agent, here are some things you should do.
For the majority of homeowners, buying or selling a house is one of the most significant transactions made in life. It’s wise to make appropriate preparations in advance of entering the housing market.
Advice to Buyers
Check Your Finances And Credit History
Before hiring an agent, take a look into all aspects of your finances, especially your credit score. Why? Obtaining pre-approval for a mortgage is very involved, and depending on your situation, it can be time-consuming. With pre-approval, you actually apply for a loan with your lender and get a firm number for your mortgage and interest rate. To get pre-approved for a loan you will need to provide documentation regarding your income, proof of employment, debts, assets and credit history. Equifax explains that sometimes cleaning up bookkeeping errors or dents in your credit history can take time. This is why it’s very important to take a look at your finances long before you begin the home search so you get the lowest mortgage rate possible and save money in the long run.
Know What You Want
When shopping for a home, you can expedite the process by refining your priorities. Know what you want and need and learn what is available. For instance, visiting open houses is a great way to “try on” neighborhoods to see how they fit. Go to events with the mindset that you are looking at the area as well as the house. Is the commute to your work reasonable? Are you comfortable with the proximity of nearby houses? Does the neighborhood seem noisy? Make lists of your priorities, noting what you need versus what you want. Also, try to find out why the home is for sale. Is maintaining the property too costly or are utilities out of sight?
Advice to Sellers
Prepare Your Property
When you’re planning to sell a house, you should declutter key areas to show them to their best advantage. Don’t leave your personal belongings as it hinders buyers from seeing themselves in the space. You should also deep clean the house, and pay special attention to bathrooms. Now is also the time to make any necessary repairs or easy updates, and don’t forget to consider curb appeal. Add some pops of color, change out house numbers or even install a new mailbox.
As you move to list your home, you want a ballpark figure of its value. It also helps to get an idea of what similar homes in your area are listing for, so use an online estimation tool and look at various listings. If you want to avoid any surprises during a buyer's home inspection, you could go ahead and hire an inspector now so you're aware of any serious issues with your home. Having that knowledge know can give you the opportunity to make fixes that won't catch you off guard. And it's not a huge investment considering that home inspections in St. Pete average around $307.
There are key steps toward buying or selling a home. Know your market, make preparations, and then call your realtor. You’ll be on your way in no time!
Submitted by Charles Simmons