Step 5: Make an Offer
Once you’ve found a home you love, the next step is deciding on a price. It’s important to remember that a home is an investment. Your agent can give you information on other properties in the neighborhood to help you ensure you make an informed decision when it comes to price. Look to your agent to explain and guide you through the offer process.
Some things to consider when deciding on the best price point are:
- List price – Start with the price point that the home is listed at. This will give you a base when looking at the home’s value.
- Market Analysis – Your agent will give you an idea of comparable home values in the neighborhood to help you decide if the price point is on par.
- Improvements – Your agent can give you a list of improvements made to the home and help you determine its market value.
Step 6: Perform Due Diligence
Your agent will provide you with improvements and challenges within your home. This way you’ll know what you are getting into before you complete the purchase.
Knowing what work has and has not been done to your home is important information to have in the buying process. While updates can increase your home value, damages can take money out of your pocket. Your main concern is the possibility of structural damage, which can come from water, shifting ground or poor construction.
Very often a problem appears to be big, but can be fixed with very little effort and not a huge budget.
Step 7: Close
Once you’ve determined a price point you’re comfortable with, you’re in the “home” stretch! But, in order to ensure that you don’t put the property purchase at risk, you have a couple responsibilities that you’ll need to keep in mind:
- Staying in control of your credit and finances – Do not make any large purchases during this time. It’s important to keep your financials steady throughout the buying process. Talk to your financial consultant for guidance.
- Keeping in touch with your agent and financial consultant – It’s important to stay in constant communication with your agent and financial guide during this process. Be sure to return all phone calls and complete paperwork promptly. Also, don’t be afraid to ask questions. Your team is there to help you!
Step 8: Protect Your Investment
Congratulations, and welcome home! The home-buying process is complete, which means it’s time for your maintenance plan! It’s now your responsibility, and in your best financial interest, to protect your investment for years to come. Performing routine maintenance on your home’s systems is always more affordable than having to fix big problems later. Be sure to watch for signs of leaks, damage and wear.
And remember, just because the sale is complete, your relationship with your agent doesn’t need to end! After you buy, your agent can still help you – providing information on the real estate market, finding contractors and repair services, and even tracking your home’s current value.