Home Buying in Fall

A lot of people think the best time to buy a house is during the Spring market.

And, it is…

…in the sense that more houses are listed for sale in the Spring. But, there’s also a heck of a lot more buyers trying to buy those listings.

The thing is, some of the houses listed back in the Spring don’t end up selling. (Usually just because they were overpriced.)

Now, it isn’t like new listings don’t happen in the Fall. There’s always new listings coming on the market. But it’s not like, just because it’s Fall and not Spring, prices are necessarily going to fall. In other words, new listings aren’t likely to list for a lot lower than you would have seen in the Spring.

However, the homeowners who did list back in the Spring, are much more likely to be anxious (perhaps even desperate) to sell their home. They’ve created their own problem…they missed the boat by pricing too high.

Which is great news for you, if you’re looking to buy a home:

  • Less competition. (Many buyers stop looking at this time of year…for no good reason.)
  • Motivated sellers. (They’re sick of being on the market, and wondering why nobody bought their house.)

But it isn’t always easy to find those listings. They don’t wave a white flag, or lower their price to some ridiculous amount everyone would notice. If only it were that easy…
Just because someone listed their home back in the Spring doesn’t mean they’ll be all that negotiable.

There are certain things a great real estate agent will know to look for.

And I love rolling up my sleeves and finding the ones we can most likely negotiate the best deals on.

So, got anything you want me to roll up my sleeves and look for? Real estate deals won’t just fall in your lap, but I can certainly help you find one this Fall.

Want another reason to buy a home in the Fall?

You can take advantage of year-end sales to outfit your home!

Hardly anybody buys a home who doesn’t want (or need) to make improvements, however small. So why not coordinate your purchase with sales on items you’ll need? According to Consumer Reports, September is an ideal time for buying carpet and paint. In October lawn mowers go on sale, and the same goes for appliances and cookware in November.

4 Tips For Buying Your First Home

If “Buy my first home” is at the top of your list of life goals, here are 4 tips to getting those papers signed and having the keys in your hand.

1. Clean Up Your Credit

Your credit score is one of the main factors that determines whether you get a loan to purchase your home – and what interest rate you’ll pay on said loan. The better your credit score, the better rates you’ll get on your mortgage, which can save you tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars over the course of your mortgage.

The first step to cleaning up your credit is knowing your number. A recent survey conducted by LendingTree found that nearly 60% of Americans don’t know their credit score. Don’t be that person! Not knowing your credit score can ruin your chances of getting a loan. Most of the major credit card companies, like Chase and American Express, allow you to check your FICO score directly from your account interface. But you’ll also want to check your credit report for inaccuracies, so use a service like LendingTree or Credit Karma to get a more accurate picture of what’s going on with your credit.

Once you know your score, it’s time to do damage control if necessary. Contact the credit bureaus to correct any misinformation on your credit report. If you have any delinquent accounts, pay them off. If you’re struggling to pay down your balances, look into consolidating your debt or working with a credit repair company to get your payments down and your credit back on track.

2. Don’t Accrue Any New Debt

Once you’ve got your credit under control and are working to raise your score, it’s important that you don’t accrue any new debt. Credit inquiries can bring down your credit score, and large balances (like a new car loan) can make you look like a riskier borrower to lenders.

If you’re on the market for your first home, keep your spending to the necessities and don’t take on any new debt.

3. Stash Away Savings

You also need to make savings a priority. A good motto for potential homebuyers is “the more savings, the better.”

No matter which way you slice it, purchasing a home is an expensive ordeal, and while a mortgage certainly helps to offset the costs, there’s a lot of things you’ll need to pay for out of pocket. You’ll need a good chunk of the purchase price set aside to use as a down payment, money for closing costs, cash to cover moving from your current place to your new home… the expense list goes on and on, which is why it’s important that you have plenty of funds in the bank to facilitate the home-buying process without putting too much strain on you and your family.

Talk to your lender about how much you should realistically have in the bank before you make the purchase. Then, do everything you need to do to hit that number before you buy your home.

If you have trouble saving, set up an automatic transfer from your checking account to your savings account that pulls a certain amount from every paycheck to add to your savings. Immediately put any “found money”, like bonuses or tax refunds, into your savings account. Download an app like Digit that analyzes your spending habits and transfers small amounts into your savings – you won’t even notice it’s missing, and every dollar counts!

4. Choose The Right Real Estate Agent

One of the best weapons in a first-time-buyer’s arsenal is the right real estate agent. Working with the right real estate agent can make you fall in love with the process of buying home or make you wish you could go back to renting for all of eternity.

When choosing an agent, you’ll want to work with someone who has experience in the type of property you’re looking to buy in your desired location. You’ll also want to work with someone who isn’t overloading with clients and who has experience working with first-time-buyers. You’re likely to have a lot of questions along the way, and you don’t want to work with an agent who’s too busy or frustrated to answer them for you.

With these tips, you’ll be well on your way to making your dream of owning your first home a reality.