Who hasn’t made a purchase only to regret it once the deal is done? I know there are many Temecula-Murrieta residents that have second-guessed themselves after purchasing a new home. It certainly doesn’t have to happen if a new home buyer just follows these four simple steps to make certain they are buying the right home and avoid the four pitfalls that will drive any buyer crazy.
What to do:
1. Establish your wants vs. needs
Sit down with everyone whose opinion matters in the selection of your new home. It might be parents, a spouse or even your children, but include everyone. Decide what you collectively agree on what is an absolute must have – these are your “needs.” Then create a second list of the features you want in your new home and call it your “wants.” In most situations the “wants” will be a much longer list – make sure to understand the difference between the two.
Create a personal checklist so that when you start looking at homes, you’ll be able to narrow your search based on your needs that will warrant a strong consideration and schedule a viewing with your REALTOR® in real time. Now look for the home that fulfills most of your wants. While this may sound pretty basic, you’d be surprised at how many buyers never do this and make decisions strictly on emotions and first impressions.
2. Location, location, location
The three most important rules in real estate are the same in Temecula and Murrieta as they are anywhere else in California or across the country. Buying your dream home in a horrible neighborhood is never a good idea and will likely lead to buyer’s remorse. Your new home will be the center point of your life from work to school, church to hobbies, distance between friends and family. These are all vital to your happiness.
Your home is your castle and you’ll want to make certain that you enjoy being there – and you won’t if you don’t like the neighborhood or other attributes of the location. A long commute gets very tiring very quickly and can become very expensive in both time and auto expenses.
3. A second look is critical
Who has never gotten excited about a Temecula or Murrieta home for sale after the first look? It’s so easy to get ramped-up (especially if you don’t have a wants and needs checklist) about a home during your first visit. Taking a second look will give you, the buyer, an opportunity to look at the home with a critical eye and a more objective thought process. It’s much easier to pick up on the negative aspects of the home for sale on the second viewing that went unnoticed the first time the home was seen.
4. Sleep on it
Even in the most competitive seller’s market, where homes are going quickly, a good buyer’s agent should be able to reach out to the listing agent and let them know that they have a motivated buyer who will be submitting an offer the following day – so never worry about losing a house because you could not make a spontaneous offer after spending 20 minutes in a house. Even if the seller has an offer on the table, they’ll typically wait 24 hours to see what you will be offering.
What not to do:
1. Don’t use the wrong
Hiring a real estate agent should not be about their smile, the cute picture of their kids or dog or even because they may be a relative, a friend or a friend of a friend. Hiring the wrong REALTOR® when you want to buy a Temecula-Murrieta home can lead to disaster, therapy and even ulcers. Ok, maybe that’s being a bit pessimistic, but certainly hiring the wrong real estate agent can be stressful at best and cost you a lot of money in a worst case scenario.
I would not necessarily advocate the agent with the most experience – experience can be crucial if you can truly verify the agent’s level of expertise. Don’t rely on their marketing pieces. Rather, I would suggest that you rely on your gut instinct. I am assuming, of course, that you consider yourself a pretty good judge of character and character is what really matters. Consider this:
* Does your agent look you in the eye when speaking to you and have a firm sincere handshake?
* Does your agent listen to you and help you establish the need in a Temecula-Murrieta home?
* Is your agent genuinely interested in helping you and your family find what you want? Or are they more concerned about closing escrow, cashing a commission check and moving on?
* Do you connect with your agent and feel that the relationship is genuine and trustworthy?
You and your agent will be spending a lot of time together and you’ll be relying on their expertise, professional opinions and local market knowledge to purchase your new home. If any of the above answers are “no” keep looking and find the agent that gets you.
2. Don’t feel like you must berate “the other guy”
When faced with a multiple offer situation, don’t get caught up in the game of one-upmanship. Stay focused. You don’t have to be the winner. Working with the right buyer’s agent you’ll have access to local market conditions and know what the home is worth. You shouldn’t offer any higher than the market allows. Your agent will be able to structure the strongest offer you are comfortable with that includes more than just a price consideration. If you don’t get the home, accept it as it wasn’t meant to be and that your perfect home is waiting for you to walk through the door.
3. Don’t let family or friends share what they think
We want to think that our friends and family have out best interests at heart but many times they just don’t get it. They have no idea what is really on the market today. They have no idea about prices, condition or what’s really important to you, the buyer. Who knows, maybe (just maybe), there might be a hint of envy or jealousy shining through looking to derail your happiness…it happens.
Pulling out late in the transaction can be very expensive. You might lose the lease on the home you are currently renting. You are out-of-pocket for all of the inspections and the appraisal. You’ll probably lose your earnest money deposit – or in many cases 3 percent of the purchase price, not to mention all the time it took to get to the point where you cancel the deal based on a third party’s intervention. If you ever hear the words, “you’ll thank me later” just go ahead and cringe now.
Oh, and there are actually some Temecula-Murrieta real estate brokers who will even sue you for the lost commission that they are entitled to under the terms of the contract.
Yes, there are exceptions, but you’ve probably talked to your inner circle of trusted advisors early in the process – it’s when an out-of-town expert arrives with no understanding of the local real estate market, never met your agent and has no idea what is usual and customary in the local Temecula-Murrieta real estate market that things can quickly get turned sideways.
Besides, how are you going to feel when the same house closes escrow in another month or two for a lot more than you could have had it for?
4. Whatever you do don’t look at other homes once under contract
Remember the 1970s song “Love the One You’re With” by Stephen Stills? Well, the lesson applies here – you have a house under contract – love it. Would you keep an active account on an internet dating site once you’re engaged? I think not.
If you followed the steps above, there is no reason to keep looking. Plan on a smooth closing and escrow with the house of your dreams.
Call us today and get the information you need to make the right decision. The info is free, call now! (951) 296-8887.
Questions regarding available inventory and/or other real estate matters please contact us today, [email protected] Mike Mason, Broker/Owner of MASON Real Estate Cal. BRE: 01483044, Board of Director of your Southwest Riverside County Association of Realtors® (SRCAR), Traveling State Director, California Association of Realtors® (C.A.R.).