Monday, December 10, 2007

Las Vegas Home Buyer - Avoid Errors in the Buying Process

Avoid making an error when you buy your Las Vegas home by being informed about the home buying process. You are the person paying the mortgage, ultimately every decision will be up to you. Create a plan before you start looking at homes. Here are some tips on making the most of your home purchase.

Research the Market

You are ready to make an offer on your dream home. Now what? Do you offer list? Do you start really low? Is the list price even realistic? Now is the time to research the market. Your real estate agent should provide you all the factual market information you need prior to any offer being made on the home. The information provided should include neighborhood sales, neighborhood availability, overall market conditions, and the condition of the home and neighborhood. In addition, your agent will sit with you and identify other factors that could affect your offer price such as, how much you love the home or that great park that is just around the corner from the house. There are tangible and intangible factors involved in making your first offer. Knowledge allows you to make an intelligent decision on the offer you will make for your home.

Know What You Want

Before hopping into your real estate agent's car make a needs list. What do you need in your next home? Single story or two? Big kitchen or small? Is a short commute time important? Is there a specific school you want to be near? How far are you willing to drive to the grocery store? Write down everything that comes to mind. Don't forget to share this list with your agent. Often buyers feel they will come off as too difficult or picky if they have a long list of needs. That is not true. Pinpoint and share exactly what is a must in your next home. This will allow your agent to show you homes that will match your needs.

Unexpected Repairs

Nothing frustrates a buyer more than moving into their home and finding out that the water heater doesn't work. Avoid unpleasant repair surprises by hiring a professional home inspector. You should also be present for the inspection. This is a great time to get ideas from the inspector of future potential problems or helpful suggestions to increase energy efficiency. In addition, a contingency can be written into your contract that protects you should a major repair be needed to the home. This will allow you to bow out of the deal without losing your earnest money deposit.

Get the Loan

Often buyers will set their price range based upon an online calculator. While these calculators can give you a good idea of loan amounts, it is best to get to a lender and get a pre-approval. A pre-approved buyer has more power when making an offer. In addition, you can confidently shop for your home knowing that your are looking at homes within your budget.

Know the Costs

Buying a home takes money. Some of this money will be needed prior to closing - earnest money, inspection costs, appraisal fees. Other amounts will be needed at the closing table - lender fees, downpayment, interest fees, homeowner's assocation fees, taxes, insurance.

Make Sure It is all in Writing

If it is not in writing then it doesn't exist. If the seller says they will remove that eyesore shed from the backyard prior to you moving in make sure it is written somewhere and signed off by the seller. No paperwork means too bad for you. Don't rush to sign the documents - read them.

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