Some people have all the luck. I’ve known a few of them. We go to one house they saw online – we look at 1 or two comparable homes around Seattle, but they knew the first one was the house for them before they even saw it. They put in an offer, it’s accepted the same day, and they move in 30 days later. Sounds great, right?
However, most recent home buyers have house-hunting stories that are on the other side of the spectrum. Year long house hunts, several offers, waiting for short sale responses, bidding wars (yes, there are bidding wars going on), and frustrating hoops to jump through with bank negotiations are all much more typical.
If you’re wondering how long a house hunt typically takes – I won’t make you read too much longer: it’s about 12 weeks according to a study by the National Association of REALTORS (R).
If you’re currently looking for a home and haven’t found one yet, I’ve put together a series of suggestions to help keep the home search on track. Keeping checking back, I’ll be posting my top 5 suggestions on how to prepare (or re-assess) your house hunt:
1. Be Prepared to Act. (Read this post by clicking here)
2. Be Prepared for Rejection. (Read this post by clicking here)
3. Be Prepared to have Realistic Expectations. (Read this post by clicking here)
4. Be Prepared to limit your “deal-breakers”. (Read this post by clicking here)
5. Prepare to ignore the peanut gallery.
Of course, you want input from people you trust in your life.
That said, it’s likely that these people may have not:
1) Bought a home in your town;
2) In your desired neighborhood (each neighborhood in Seattle is unique in it’s own way);
3) With your specific wish list;
4) In your price range;
5) At the same moment in time you find yourself house hunting;
6) And, spend as much time searching and looking at homes as you have.
They are also not authorities on any of the following:
1) how cheap ‘those foreclosures’ actually are,
2) how much you are willing to pay/spend,
3) how much of a discount you should be able to negotiate,
3) how much is too much for you to pay,
4) how desperate the sellers are to sell, or
5) how much you love the home.
That lack of authority, however, won’t be stopping your family, friends and colleagues from offering their own critiques, suggestions, or expert opinions on how to buy a home and get the best deal. Many of these people have no idea of the real market dynamics you face…and no, reading the most recent newspaper article does not make them an expert either.
Trust yourself, your situation, and your team (agent, lender, etc.) to help you navigate the waters of purchasing a home. You should feel comfortable with the purchase, decisions you make, and negotiations – because at the end of the day – YOU are the one living in your home and making the payments!