BUYERS SHOULD AVOID THESE MISTAKES (Being updated)
1. Making an offer without being pre-qualified.
Most sellers will not even entertain an offer from a buyer who has not at least been pre-qualified for a loan. What is more, pre-qualification will make your life easier – so take the time to speak with a lender before looking for a new house! Their specific questions with regard to income, debt, etc., will help you determine the price range you can afford. It is an important step on the path to ownership. It does not make sense to look at houses that you cannot afford!
2. Not knowing the pitfalls in the contract you are signing.
The GAR (Georgia Association of Realtors) contract is constantly being updated to account for new Court Rulings. Avoid the pitfall of using another form for your contract. It is now more than ever before “Buyer’s beware”.
3. Not having a home inspection.
Trying to save money today can end up costing you tomorrow. A qualified home inspector will detect issues that many buyers can overlook. During the Due Diligence period the Buyer can make a request for any repairs needed or issues with the property that were discovered during this period. It is essential that the Buyer and the Realtor® keep a close eye on the calendar.
4. Limiting your search to open houses, ads or the Internet.
Many homes listed in Magazines or on the Internet have already been sold. Your best course of action is to contact a Realtor®, that means me! I have up-to-date information that is unavailable to the general public.
5. Choosing a Real Estate agent who is not committed to forming a strong business relationship with you.
Making a connection with the right Realtor® is crucial. Choose a professional who is dedicated to serving your needs – before, during and after the sale. If you don’t want to work with me, that’s fine, but please find another qualified Realtor!
6. Thinking there is only one perfect house out there.
Buying a home is a process of elimination, not selection. New properties come on the market daily, so be open to all possibilities. Ask your Realtor to set you up with a Client Gateway Website. That way you will know what is available now and be informed as new listings become available.
7. Not considering long term needs.
It is important to think ahead. Will the home suit your needs 3 – 5 years from now? Will you stay in the home that long. If you are only staying a couple of years it probably does not make sense to buy! Also, how long you expect to stay will affect the terms for a loan that are best for you.
8. Not examining insurance issues.
Purchase adequate insurance. Advice from an insurance agent can provide you with answers to any concerns you may have.
9. Not buying a home protection plan.
This is essentially a mini insurance policy that usually lasts one year from the close of escrow. It usually covers basic repairs you may encounter and can be purchased for a nominal fee. Ask your agent to help you find the protection plan you need. In many cases the Seller will purchase a home warranty for the Buyer. Your Realtor® can negotiate this for you.
10. Not knowing the total costs involved.
Early in the buying process, ask your Realtor or lender for an estimate of closing costs. Title company and attorney fees should be considered. Homeowner Association fees and insurance must also be taken into account. Remember to examine your settlement statement prior to closing.
11. Not following though on due diligence.
Buyers should make a list of any concerns they have relating to issues such as; crime rates, schools, power lines, neighbors, environmental conditions, etc. Ask the important questions before you make an offer on a home. Remember that there are questions that a Realtor cannot legally answer. However, there are other ways by which you can get your questions answered.
12. Falling in love with a house that you have seen!
Do that and you will lose your bargaining power. Stay detached and business-like until you have a firm contract – and until the deal has closed and the house is yours, your new HOME
13. Not having a SURVEY.
We can relate horror stories of people who did not have a survey done when they purchased property, or had a home constructed without a survey.
14. Not having TITLE INSURANCE.
Again, we can tell you horror stories about people who “saved” by not having title insurance!
15. Not having a TERMITE INSPECTION.
Termite damage may not be visible to you. Failing to find it can be very expensive. Get that inspection!
16. Not reading the Condominium Documents and/or Homeowners Association Documents before you sign that contract.
Failure to review these documents could be disastrous. Want to hear horror stories? We have them!
17. Buying from a “For Sale by Owner” (FSBO) without representation.
Have me or your Realtor contact the Seller first. That way your interests can be protected.