In real estate terms this is, indeed, a buyer’s market–a time when the supply of Mobile Eastern Shore real estate for sale far exceeds the demand. And that is good news for those of you who are house hunting, for you may well find just the deal you’ve been looking for. You can certainly make an offer that is below the asking price and ask the seller to add upgrades, pay closing costs, or otherwise provide incentives for you to purchase that particular piece of Mobile Eastern Shore real estate. Even if you may be holding most of the cards, however, here are some tips to make your search easier and more successful.
- Get pre-approved for a loan
- Be knowledgeable about prices. Spend some time with a realtor looking at comparables and recent sales in your target area so you’ll recognize a fair price.
- Check out property taxes in the area. High taxes can sometimes add hundreds of dollars to your monthly payment, something you need to know in advance.
- Go online to preview homes and neighborhoods
THE IN-PERSON SEARCH:
- Ride with your Realtor. It’s better for you to concentrate on curb appeal and surroundings than on traffic.
- Dress comfortably and practically. Be prepared to remove your shoes, trek up and down stairs, tour the outside grounds, inspect corners, etc.
- Don’t rush. Give yourself time to carefully explore and inspect each piece of Mobile Eastern Shore real estate you visit. Avoid seeing too many homes in one day; at a certain point the details of each become blurred and easily confused.
- Use your senses:
1. Look at the area surrounding the house in terms of amenities, commutes, property conditions, schools, etc.
2. Listen for barking dogs, train whistles, loud traffic, and the like. Can you live with such distractions?
3. Inhale deeply. Be suspicious of any unpleasant smells (or obvious attempts to mask them) and try to identify them. Some odors can be eliminated, but those which result in mold or mildew can signal real problems.
THE END IS IN SIGHT:
- Work with your realtor to make a fair and reasonable offer. Be prepared for a counteroffer from the seller. Know the limit you’re willing to spend and what terms are most important to you. Be willing to negotiate in an agreeable manner.
- Insist on a home inspection. You don’t want any unpleasant surprises after the closing.
- Get an estimate and a breakdown of all closing costs in advance. You need to know how much money you’ll need to “bring to the table.” Sometimes closing costs are much as 2%-6% of your loan amount.
- Coordinate the date of your moving with the date of possession of your new home. Avoid the inconvenience and expense of a temporary rental or a hotel stay.