There are many things that can go wrong when buying home. And while I’ve always believed the best way to learn is through experience, most homeowners would probably prefer to avoid costly mistakes at the outset, without having to learn hard lessons firsthand. Here are four common mistakes that immediately come to mind:
Failing to read the disclosures.
I encourage my homebuyers time and time again to READ READ READ the disclosures. Yes, I realize disclosure packages can be hundreds of pages and most people are very busy (too busy to read such a lofty packet of legal mumbo jumbo). And unfortunately, turn around times can be quite brief, especially here in the Bay Area. But buying a home does require some effort. When spending thousands of dollars of your hard earned savings on a new home, you will want to be sure you know what you’re buying.
Failing to get home inspections.
In a competitive market, it’s common for inspections to be tossed out the window in order to compete against other homebuyers. And to be fair, there are indeed some instances where waiving inspections can make sense (several of my clients have done this successfully). But for many people, home inspections can make or break your homebuying experience. All too often a homebuyer doesn’t discover something wrong with the house until after closing. And there’s nothing like having to shell out hundreds of dollars you weren’t expecting to spoil the excitement of owning your new home.
The more informed you are about what you’re getting into, the better. If a home inspection reveals something outside of your budget, or something you don’t want to go through the hassle of dealing with, you can decide whether it’s worthwhile to continue with the purchase or move on.
Failing to share information with your realtor.
Your realtor really does want to get to know you. Not only does it benefit them in knowing who they are working with, but it benefits you — the homebuyer — in gaining all the information you’ll need to make informed decisions. In fact, any information you share about yourselves, your financial qualifications (or lack thereof), your wants vs. needs for your new home, etc. could help them guide you to the right information for you. They might know of a loan program that you could benefit from, or that a particular neighborhood would not be a good option for you, or any number of other things they might not think to tell you if they don’t know much about you.
Failing to ask your lender(s) about different loan products and services.
This post wouldn’t feel complete without mentioning this common mistake. In today’s email-heavy world, too often I see homebuyers communicate with people solely by email. This can lead to miscommunication and missed opportunity to learn new things and about different products or services that you hadn’t known about before, and that could potentially have a big impact on your homebuying decision. Having a real-time conversation with a person can help you to discover so much more than an email chain can convey. I encourage homebuyers to pick up the phone and actually speak with and get to know the people they are working with during the homebuying process.
For more information and tips on homebuying, please contact me:
Corpen Real Estate Group CaBRE #02010273