I am a buyer's agent in New Jersey (serving Hudson, Bergen, Passaic, Essex, & Union County) :Help you find the right property. As your agent I will determine what you are looking for and
Awesome Tips For First Time Home Buyers
Here are some great tips when purchasing a home. This isn't necessarily for your first home. People that have purchased multiple propertikes may also learn a few things from this list. As the market changes, the rules of engagement in a transaction change as well. As markets flood with buyers, and inventory remains low like in some pockets of New Jersey, it becomes harder to get what you want. I put this together in efforts to help today's consumer get what they want. I hope I was able to help you!
Know what you want.
- Set an expectation. Write down exactly what you must have, and what you can live without.
Keep in mind that finding the perfect home will be tough. Especially if it's already pre-existing. That perfect home is going to cost serious money, since you would have to build it out right.
- Make sure you know exactly what type of house you like.
There are many different styles of homes. Colonials, Ranches, Split-Levels, Bi-Levels, etc.. All look different, but suit certain peoples taste. Some styles are more desirable than others, therefore price may play a huge factor.
- Have your financials in line.
I have seen a lot of people visit properties that they were unable to afford. It's a massive heart break when this happens. This also ruins your expectations moving forward, because you will always end up comparing that house that you couldn't afford to those in your price range.
Know how much you can afford.
- Have a budget.
You will always be pre-approved for more than you can actually afford. When you get a pre-approval, they don't take into consideration private expenses like your child's gymnastics class. These are expenses that only you would know and will affect you from being able to do that if you come in at the top of your home buying budget.
- Know what fees need to be paid out to make a transaction happen.
Please know that there are fees besides your down payment that have to be paid out. For example, real estate appraisals, any re-inspections if the appraisal is made subject to repairs, home inspections, and more. Some may be closing cost, but there are fees that are UP FRONT.
- Find a home that will meet your budget guidelines.
Many area in New Jersey are cheaper than others. You can get more for your money further into the state of New Jersey. But take into consideration your travels to and from work. You may incur added charges in tolls and gas. Is the new house on a Septic System, this is an added expense on getting the septic system cleaned out, and maintained. Is my local super market close, or do I have to travel several miles. This would be an added expense in gas that can hurt your, especially with the gas tax hike.
- Educate your self on what it costs to maintain a home.
Houses need regular maintenance. They will rapidly deteriorate if you don't maintain them. Prepare yourself for what may go wrong. Anything can happen. When you own, you're pretty much responsible for anything that happens. If a pipe breaks, or a hot water heater goes, you want to be able to afford a replacement right away.
Learn local market conditions and trends.
- Markets are constantly changing.
Keeping an eye on how many properties are listed and sold, will grant you an edge.
- Interest rates are still low.
Interest rates are subject to credit and type of loan. Please know what your interests are going to be, that way there's no surprises.
- Know resale value.
Many people tend to look for a bigger home, as they start to build a family together. A survey states that a first time home buyer will probably move at least two more times in their life time. Make sure you're not purchasing a home that may sit on the market, or will be tough to resell.
- The market has currently shifted.
In today's market you have to be aggressive. Inventory is very low, properties are being listed, and sold within days. I know this may be a gut wrenching experience, but if you see something you like, make the decision if you're going to move on it right then and there. Chances are if you go to think about it, there will probably be multiple offers on it. You don't want to end up fighting a group of people over a home, it will only drive the price up!
- Try not to get emotionally attached.
Anything can happen in a transaction, at any point. It's scary! You're pretty much in the clear once escrow closes. I have witness a lot of things go wrong from when an offer was accepted, until escrow has been closed. In ex. home inspection issues, structural problems, people losing their jobs, seller not being to close, or find a home. There are many other issues that can prevent the sale of a home. Please keep in mind, ANYTHING CAN HAPPEN!
- Don't get hung up on the price.
Do set a price, but don't stay ultimately stuck on it. Giving in a few grand here and there will not only allow you to be in the home you may love, but it won't affect the mortgage payment as much. Please keep in mind that you pay a mortgage usually over 30 years.
Choose the right home.
- Love what you buy.
This is going to be the biggest investment of your life. Chose something you can live in and with.
- Chose the right place.
Always keep in mind, location, location, location!
- Take your time finding the home that suits your needs.
Don't over do it. Make sure you will be totally occupying everything that you're purchasing. If it's just you and your significant other, you probably won't need 6 bedrooms and 4 bathrooms.
- Once you see that perfect home, act quickly.
Properties are flying off the market right now. As stated before, if you need a few days to think about it, be prepared to get into a bidding war.
I hope this has cleared up a lot of questions you may have. Always feel free to call/email/text me. My advice is FREE!
Filiberto (Phil) Ramos
The greatest compliment you can give me is a referral.
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