Tuesday Tip: 3.21.17 It’s a HOT market

It’s a HOT Real Estate market right now in the Conejo Valley. Are you ready to be a part of it? Are you thinking of selling or buying? Watch this for some helpful insight and then be sure to watch our other Tuesday Tip video about getting pre-qualified on a loan before shopping for real estate. Selling doesn’t have to be overwhelming. Let’s chat for 15 minutes because you may not need to do as much as you think.

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How To Win The Bid On You Dream Home

It’s that time of year when people start looking for a new home. It’s exciting. It’s fun. It’s also a competitive market out there right now with multiple offers on homes that are updated and move-in ready. So how do you make sure you put forth a successful offer on the home of your dreams? Here are a few tips:

Use a Realtor with a proven track record

Not all real estate agents are the same. If you should be in a multiple bid situation, a good Realtor will present your offer in the best possible light and really sell your offer to the Seller. Some transactions fall out of escrow – in fact, more than you realize – so make sure you have a Realtor that will drive the transaction to close and protect your interests all along the transaction. How do you know if they have a good track record in closing transactions? Ask them. You can check their references too. But also do your homework and check out their ratings on Zillow and other real estate sites.

Use a reputable Lender

There are so many mortgage lenders out there. You probably know a few personally. But just because they are your relative or friend, doesn’t mean they are the best place to get your mortgage. You can shop rates and points, but please use a lender who will meet the transaction deadlines so your home closing doesn’t have to be postponed due to delays in processing or underwriting. Ask your Realtor for their trusted business lending partners or family and friends for ones they like and have used successfully.

Get a Pre-Approval Letter

Home buyers are often so excited to start looking at houses that they tend to leave the more bureaucratic aspects of home buying until last. In this competitive market, a serious buyer should get a pre-approval letter from their lender in advance of beginning a home search. It’s written statement from a lender stating that you qualify for a particular loan amount under that lender’s guidelines based on their review of actual bank statements, W-2 forms and other asset documents. This way you are shopping for a home you know you can afford and it lets the seller know you are a serious buyer.

A pre-qualified letter is not the same as a pre-approval letter and doesn’t carry as much credibility because it’s only based on what you verbally tell the lender rather than the lender reviewing your actual documents. I realize some people don’t want to share their personal information but you will have to at some point to get a mortgage so just get it over with at the start so you can truly enjoy the home shopping process.

I’ve dealt with a few multiple offers already this year. My advice to my clients who are selling is to choose the strongest offer. Please understand that a strong offer is not only the dollar amount offered but also whether the Realtor and Lender are ones that can get the transaction closed on time and work together as issues arise. I have trusted lenders in this business for a reason. I can rely on them for great customer service to my clients and because they do whatever it takes to meet the closing deadlines so a dream home doesn’t slip away to another buyer waiting in line. I have seen deals fall through because a real estate agent or the lender let deadlines pass without obtaining the necessary information or paperwork. So protect yourself as you go out there to get that house you really want. Good luck and happy home buying (with your pre-approval letter in hand)!

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Tuesday Tip: 2 28 17 Open House Availability

Making your home be available for buyers helps to get your home sold faster. It’s not easy to always keep your house tidy, but you will have to do it for less time if you don’t put restrictions on when potential buyers can view your home and you are “open” for Open Houses.

 

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Tuesday Tip: Making Your Best Offer on a Home

The Real Estate Market is starting to heat up here in sunny SoCal. Great homes are typically receiving multiple offers. So how do you make sure you are submitting the BEST offer you can in a competitive real estate market? Watch for my tips. There is an important difference between Preapproved and Prequalified mortgage letters.

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Purpose and Points of a Home Inspection

Buying a home is a huge investment. Having a home inspection on that home before your close on the purchase transaction is an even bigger investment for a lot less money. The home inspection is an important process in the home buying experience and one that is very informational so please do not skip it. The last thing you want to do is buy a home in need of thousands of dollars in repairs that you were not aware of and did not negotiate for in its price. So, let’s go through the process.

The buyer gets to choose the home inspector. As such, make sure you choose a reputable, licensed inspector. How do you find a good one? Ask your Realtor as they most likely have inspectors who are thorough and competent from past home inspections, research top inspectors on the Internet (sites such a Yelp can be very helpful), or ask your family and friends who they have used and liked. It a good idea to call an inspector and ask any questions you may have and even request recent referrals.

Once you have selected your home inspector, it is helpful to actually attend the house inspection and follow the inspector at the end of the inspection as he highlights and points out issues in the home. You may even pick up a tip or two about making your new home more energy efficient or how certain things work. It’s important to remember that no house is perfect…not even a new home. Believe it or not, inspectors even find repairs that are needed with a new home. Every home inspection seems to uncover conditions that need repair and/or potential safety-related concerns relating to the home. Mostly, the inspector is there to make certain the home is functioning as it should, checking items such as faucets and toilets to see if they leak, or the heating and air conditioning to ensure they are in good working order. If they see something that needs more attention they will recommend further inspections with a specialist. Home inspectors won’t address cosmetic items if they don’t impair the integrity of the home. They also do not do destructive testing so know there is always some risk of flaws (such as wiring and plumbing within the walls) that cannot be assessed.

When you get your inspection report back, however lengthy it is, your inspector will generally include a summary sheet as one of the first pages. Pay particular attention to this section with all its vital information because these are the items that the inspector believes are code and safety issues that need immediate correction. The rest of the report are other issues that you should know about but the inspector may not find to be a priority at this point. Most repairs are normally not a deal breaker between buyer and seller and can be negotiated for resolution. So go forth and buy that new home because you know exactly what you are buying.

If you have any questions about the home buying process or need additional information, please don’t hesitate to contact Lydia Gable at 818-383-4335 or asklydia@lydiagable.com.

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