Thank you to my clients who sent pictures of the Amaryllis I gave to many on my holiday visits! It is SO nice to see clients old and new during the holidays and SO amazing and inspiring to see those beautiful blooms emerging in the Spring!
And now the Amaryllis are fading and inventory is picking up and it’s time to buy a house!
Step 1. Consider how long you plan on staying?
In this type of market try to buy enough house that you don’t have to move for a while.
Historically we are in 8-10yr cycles between low and high points.
Every time you sell it costs you 8-10% of the sale price. Transfer taxes, broker fees, house prep.
Step 2. Find a good local real estate agent and choose a local lender.
I know…. many buyers out there wonder what agents do since there is so much information on line???!..…..it’s a bit like finding a lump and going to the doctor….…You go for their expertise and advice based on knowledge gained from the gazillion hours they spent training and years of experience in the field doing the same thing many many times and learning from each one.
Step 3. Narrow down neighborhoods.
In this fast moving market you want to be absolutely committed and very focused when you are ready to write offers. Don’t just fall for the house!
Do research communities, crime, transport and imagine your lifestyle in different types of locations. Visit neighborhoods at night and weekends, talk to neighbors.
Are you so averse to driving you are willing to pay a lot of money to live in a shoe box near BART? Do you want some tranquility which comes with access to Park lands and an extra room for visitors to come and stay? How about schools?
Step 4. See as many homes as possible in your price range. ( currently most sell over list price!)
You want to know how many homes out there don’t work for you…….so you know why you pay to get what you want! Do weekend open homes if possible, see the “NOs” then. Visit the more likely candidates with your agent.
Step 5. Steel yourself for competition and market conditions!!
Try to ignore list prices and not be upset thinking “Oh my god ….I have to bid $100K over to even stand a chance??!” Check SOLD data with your agent.
DO NOT BE FOOLED BY ONLINE REAL ESTATE VALUATIONS !!!!!!!!!!
Of the two dozen plus listings we recently analyzed less than a handful performed as indicated by the online real estate site. Many sold for way more money, some sold for way less money.
Hang in there!! Inventory is picking up and there is a house for every realistic prepared and committed buyer!