The Important Final Step When Buying a Home

Too many people fail to appreciate the importance of a final walk-through.

As a buyer, your last moment of leverage is signing on the (many!) lines during closing. Just before that day, though, you should do a final walk-through of the home you’re buying. While you might think a quick glance through the rooms is enough, you’d be well advised to take your time.

In fact, a good walk-through should take at least 30 minutes, depending on the size of the home. You might even want to consider hiring a home inspector to revisit the place to make sure any repairs essential to the deal were taken care of properly.

Don’t perform the walk-through too early, either. No more than two days at most. If you complete the walk-through too soon, there’s always a chance severe weather or other adverse events could damage the home. (Recent weather events are also a good reason to check for leaks or water in unexpected places.)

Be sure to check appliances, light switches, heating and air conditioning systems, garage doors, and any other major systems (pool pumps and heaters) along the way, too.

Should you come across anything that raises alarms, be sure to look for a way to settle the issue in a friendly, non-confrontational manner. While you don’t want to jeopardize the closing, you may be well within your rights to seek some sort of concession from the seller.

Even with short sales and foreclosed properties, you’ll want to do a walk-through to make sure all appliances and fixtures promised are still in place before the closing. (A home might be “as is,” but it’s definitely “as is” under the terms of the contract! Don’t get shorted.)

On the whole, the walk-through is an exciting time… after all, it’s almost yours! But don’t let excitement cloud your good sense. Use a little of this walk-through wisdom to protect your investment!

I’m always on the lookout for my clients. If you need representation for buying or selling a home, please get in touch today: email me at joe@debandjoe.com or call our office at 484-893-1234.

A Simple Equation for Buying a Home

A lot of people shopping for homes are worried about ‘timing the market’, trying to make sure they are buying at the right time.  Nobody wants to buy a new home and find out in six months that similiar houses are now selling for less.  While buying at the right price is important, it’s not the only factor in determining how much you’ll eventually pay for a home.  Often overlooked in the equation is the interest rate paid on your home loan, which is a much bigger factor in your payment than many people realize.  At last week’s Keller Williams’ Family Reunion in Orlando, FL Gary Keller and the KW Research Team shared a very important equation that all home buyers should know:

A 1% change in interest rates = 10% change in sale price

Wow, that’s a great number to know!  As an example, if you buy a $200,000 home and finance $180,000 at 4% interest you’re monthly payment is $859.35.  If the home were 10% less ($180,000) but the interest rate was 1% higher (5%) the monthly payment is $858.91.  Keep in mind that this payment is only principal and interest and doesn’t include any required tax or insurance escrows. 

So now that we know that the interest rate that we pay is so important that leaves us with another important fact that Gary shared last week:

In our current market, it is 20x more likely that the interest rate will change than the sale price.

This weeks quote on a conventional 30 year fixed rate mortgage is around 3.875%.  So do you think that rate is more likely to go up or go down?  This is the ‘platinum age’ of mortgage rates.  We can pretty safely say that rates cannot go any lower; the bank is never going to pay you to take their money!  If you’ve been on the fence about buying, the exampe we did above should answer a lot of questions for you.  If you have any other questions or want to know about current rates call me at 484-893-1234 or email homes@debandjoe.com.  We’re always here to help! 

Sellers are motivated!

When supply exceeds demand, buyers have the upper hand—and that’s where we are now! The current supply of homes for sale now stands at 12.5 months, meaning that at today’s pace of home sales, it would take twelve and a half months for the existing inventory to sell. For you as a buyer, this means lots of choices, lots of negotiating power, and that smart sellers are fiercely competing for your business, both in terms of the price and the condition of their homes. For more reasons why now is prime time to buy a home, contact me and I’ll send you a free ebook.

Buyers have the edge!

According to Lawrence Yun, chief economist from the National Association of REALTORS, “Home buyers over the past year got a great deal, and buyers for the balance of this year have an edge over sellers. Affordability could reach a generational high in the second half of this year because of rock-bottom mortgage rates, helped partly by the Fed’s very accomodative monetary policy.” For more reasons why now is prime-time to buy a home, contact us and we’ll send you a free ebook!