Take the trauma out of buying a home

Buying a house, moving. It’s traumatic. I remember telling a young couple that it was normal to be nervous, to lose some sleep. Still, it’s one of the best investments most of us ever make. Consider the following when buying a house:

• If you’re not comfortable with your Realtor, find one that you are comfortable with. It’s important to find someone you respect, you understand, and that you’re confident they respect and understand you and your needs. Be sure their communication style fits with yours.

• Educate yourself on the process. Even if you’ve bought properties in the past, a lot has changed. Just type in “Home Buying” into your favorite web browser. There are tons of great websites with great information.

• Get pre-approved for a loan first. Find out what you can afford before looking at properties. It will be a more efficient use of your time. It will make for a stronger offer. It shows all parties that you are serious.

• Don’t expect everything to be perfect when buying a house. Don’t wait until everything is perfect to buy a house. In home buying, you may not get the perfect house, and the best interest rate and the lowest price. Do your best to find what you need. I sometimes suggest to people that they write down the 3-5 things that are most important to them in a house. This helps them focus on what is most important.

• If you want to confuse yourself, ask for everyone’s opinion. I do suggest being informed, but if you ask many people, you’re going to get many conflicting opinions. Choose a few people who have been through the buying process – the same few people whose opinion you respect.

• Occasionally I get a Buyer who wants to ‘win’ the negotiation. It is possible for a transaction to be win-win. The Seller wants to sell; the Buyer wants to buy. It doesn’t have to be win-lose. When you’re buying, concentrate on getting those items that are most important. I would hate to think that someone would walk away from a home they love because the washer is not included.

In closing, take it step-by-step, accept that this will be a stressful time, and move forward. Most Realtors want to help you and inform you. Let them.

Linda Ferrara – Associate Broker

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