Everyone knows that buying a home can be straining work; it’s one of the biggest decisions of your life. If you’re buying a luxury home you need to want to purchase your home with confidence. We’ve compiled a list of five steps you can take to better prepare yourself for the search and make sure you choose the right home.
1. Determine your needs and wants- before searching for a home figure out what your goals are. Luxury homes are more about a certain lifestyle than the number of bedrooms or bathrooms. Think about how long you’d like to stay in one location and how you’re going to live in the house. Make a list of your wants and needs so you can visualize your “must haves” and your “would be nice” preferences.
2. Take your time in choosing a broker- You need to spend as much time searching for a broker as you do searching for a home. Look for a realtor who is as well versed in her field as you are in yours. Ask them about their special training, education, titles, and experience. Choose a local realtor, someone who knows the neighborhood or city you wish to live in well. Not all good agents are luxury realtors, you’d be wiser to find someone who has experience in the geographic area and knows the price range in which you have an interest. If they have to use their GPS to find the next property, they may not know the area as well as they claim.
3. Choose a broker that has specialized knowledge-Whether you’re looking for a ranch, waterfront, or an equestrian estate, you need a realtor who has experience and knowledge in that field. You may not be aware that these properties entail more work than other properties including legal requirements and potential liabilities; but agents who work in a special property area make that their business. Having a trusting relationship with a great agent will put you on the inside to be the first to know about price reductions and properties which have not come out of the market yet.
4. Know the region you are searching in- Every state and city have different methods, rules, and laws on buying and selling homes. If you’re new to an area ask your agent to explain typical real estate practices, and if you haven’t been in an area for a while get an update on changes. Learn about transfer taxes, how much they are and who pays them. Take time to read and evaluate all disclosures and ask your agent to explain them to you when you begin your search.
5. Make an intellectual checklist- Most people buy what makes their hearts leap. Before making an emotional decision step back and figure out whether the house checks off all the requirements on your checklist. Do you need a pool because you swim laps every day or do you want a pool so you can lounge outside once a twice a month in the summer? Making a checklist will allow you to narrow down your options, and ensure that you won’t buy a house that doesn’t include everything you need.
6. Be prepared to establish your ability to purchase- Unless you are well known you may need to demonstrate that you are able to produce the funds for a home even to view a property.
7. Think with your head not your heart- Often the buying process will evoke many feelings in buyers, including fear and guilt. It’s important to reflect on what a certain purchase, especially of a second home, will mean for your family and your financial future. Furthermore, make sure when you’re deciding on a home you’re buying what you need and not sacrificing what you must have for what you want.
8. Research the online market- Local real estate companies are the best place to begin. That is the quickest way to learn what is available, what types of homes are in the area, and what type of prices to expect.
9. Don’t Forget Potential Fuel Costs- whether you need to commute to work, school, shopping, or the airport, you’re going to pay for gas, and it’s not as cheap as it once was. Most shoppers don’t take utilities and tax into consideration, but they often neglect the cost of fuel.
10. Avoid last minute surprises- and make sure you will not have buyer’s remorse. The most experienced buyers will have specific inspections for different features of a property from pools to electronics. This is one of the biggest changes in recent years.