REALISTIC BUYER EXPECTATIONS
The big difference between Hollywood, Florida and the other Hollywood is that we don’t have reality shows that make buying a home as quick as you can say “lights, camera, action”! Buying a home is one of the biggest investments you will make, and we are not only talking about money. This decision will also affect your peace of mind and will greatly impact your family’s quality of life. A decision this important makes it crucial that you completely understand the process and possible pitfalls. Three major areas that buyers need to be aware of are as follows:
You are in Competition with Other Buyers
We’ve all heard the saying, “While you’re sleeping on it, someone else will be sleeping in it.” At this point in time, this saying is completely accurate.. Nice homes that are priced right and marketed correctly are flying off the shelves. Multiple offers and final sales prices over the listing price are happening more and more. This might be a surprise for buyers considering they’ve been told by their parents or colleagues to start their offer at 20 percent below the listing price. If you study properties on the internet at all, you cannot help but see the flaw in this reasoning. We will go over this when we sit down with you at our buyer consultation meeting. We will preview properties on the big screen to narrow your search; by neighborhood, by features, by school districts, by location – whatever are your most important “must haves” However, you will learn quickly that when you find the home you love, you can bet someone else loves it too. We simply cannot waste time getting there first. We need to be showing within 24 hours of the listing. Then we need to write the strongest offer possible. As your Realtors, A Team Florida has more strategies than just the highest offer. We are great negotiators and committed to making sure you GET the house you want.
Strategies to Find – and buy – your Dream Home!
As mentioned before, your parents or co-workers who bought a home 10+ years ago are notorious for giving advice – please talk to us about what you are being told so we can show you how different things are in TODAY’S market. Here are some facts:
- You cannot go out looking for homes before you are pre-qualified. Not if you are working with professional realtors. Common sense would dictate that you know for a fact how much home you can afford and have the paperwork in hand to present with your offer. No seller will consider an offer seriously without accompanying proof of funds and/or mortgage pre-approval.
- Homes are selling for list price or higher if they are priced to market value. Again, because there is an army of buyers out there looking for the same thing you are; AND they sell in record time.
- Sellers do NOT normally pay buyer closing costs; not in this market. The buyer selects the title company/closing attorney and both sides pay their own taxes, fees and closing costs. Can you request that the seller pay the closing costs? Yes, but the offer really needs to make it worth their while. If you need your closing costs paid, we have ways; again, talk to us about it during your buyer consultation.
- Inventory is low and demand is high. A good deal might be NOT having to pay more than what the house is listed for. It is normal for buyers who are not market savvy to lose several homes before they learn that what their agent is telling them about making a strong offer is actually true. A Team Florida makes it a practice to get to a new listing and make the offer within 24 hours if it looks like we found your perfect home.
The All-Important Inspection
This is the biggest hurdle to navigate in today’s market and we, as well as every other agent in this market, have lost deals because of it. Many real estate transactions meet their demise at the hands of the home inspection. The inspection is all-important so you know everything that is wrong with the home; from a non-working garbage disposal to the need for a new roof. But it is only good if you know what is worth fighting for. Expect to negotiate fairly with the seller if there will be costs associated with repairs. This is probably one of the most difficult steps to navigate in the sales process for the buyers, sellers and real estate agents. This is where human nature kicks in; the seller never thinks the repair is a big deal, and the buyer sees a money pit.
A Team Florida is in a unique position because we have Brian Gaiefsky, who has a background in construction and attends every inspection. He can tell us what is important and costly and what is not. Prior to the inspection, the buyer thinks this is the most perfect and beautiful place to call home. The inspector, however, is able to wreck their world in a matter of hours by informing them of all the imperfections and “could go wrongs” lurking behind the walls of the home. Code violations are also a big issue so we run a “background check” on the home itself BEFORE the inspection and may even modify the offer based on what we find. The bottom line is that sellers have the option of fixing the problem or crediting the buyer with the funds to do it themselves. Everything is a negotiation. Sometimes is it better to just walk away. We know how to explain the pros and cons so that you can make an intelligent decision. A Team Florida always has your back!