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What to Do Before Your Dallas Home Search
Dated: November 5 2018
“Be prepared” is more than just the motto of boy scouts, it’s a wise principle to live by when you want to achieve pretty much anything. Solid preparation for any significant endeavor is important if you want to get the most out of it. This is no less true for house hunting. For something as important as finding your next home, the place you’ll spend most of your time for any number of years down the road, making sure you take all the preparatory steps you can to set yourself us for success is key.
But no one exactly tells you what those steps are, do they? First time home buyers especially often find themselves trying to see the forest through the trees when it comes to home hunting. There’s so much information out there and so much that is important to consider, that often times it can be hard to know where to start. With that being said, here are four steps you can take that will set you up for success on your next search for homes for sale in Dallas.
Number Crunch Your Budget
As you might expect, what always tops the list when it comes to things to consider when looking at the housing market in Dallas is: money. And there’s more to it than it might seem at first consideration. You’ve got to look far into the future like a psychic leaning over a crystal ball if you want to ensure you don’t run into budget problems down the line.
As an example, there are more than just monthly mortgage payments that make up the costs of owning a home; it's important to factor in property taxes, utilities, upkeep, and home warranties. Even before the purchase, buyers can be expected to pay several hundred dollars for thorough appraisal and inspection reports. Having money put aside for repairs and unexpected expenses is never a bad idea, especially when it comes to one of the largest purchases you'll make in your lifetime.
A big part of this is getting pre-approved. Doing this important step before stepping foot in the very first open house you visit is a wise thing. That’s because before setting your heart on a home, it's a good idea to find out what you can actually afford. It’s about knowing what you can expect as accurately as possible before setting out in that home hunt. A lender will work with you to see how much you are eligible to borrow based on your credit report, pay stubs, and bank statements. Getting a letter of pre-approval can also give you a leg up when you are ready to make an offer on a home, showing the seller you are serious and ready to buy.
Find the Right Dallas Realtor
Next to setting up your budget, the most important thing you can do for yourself before you take off into the wild world of home searching in Dallas is finding yourself the right Dallas real estate agent to help you. A good realtor can make all the difference in the world and more. It’s the difference between a speedy search and a long, arborous one, the difference between being able to locate all the best deals and never knowing for sure what you’re getting.
A good, experienced Dallas realtor will know the market inside and out, and will have the knowledge, resources, and skills needed to make your home hunt an undeniable success and as much of a breeze as possible. Your realtor cannot only guide you through the process, but should have a list of professionals at the ready. They’ll be able to explain to you everything about the Dallas house market you’re buying in and put together a team: a lender, a home inspector, an attorney.
So take your time interviewing several agents to find someone who will help you get the most out of your home-buying experience. Make sure you’re getting hooked with someone that not only is familiar enough with the marketplace to lead you through it, but also knows you well enough to represent you personally.
Research Your Area
A good Dallas real estate agent is going to do plenty of legwork when it comes to researching. But it’ll do you wonders in the long run to gather as much information yourself about the area you’ll be searching in. You should be visiting the area in person often as well as researching online. Use all the tools available to you to get the intel that will make a difference.
Trust me, if there is anything you want to get a good handle on before you jump in, it is the nature of the housing market in your area. If homes are being bid up as a matter of course, be wary of diving in. Housing prices don’t move in only one direction. If you overpay for a home in a hot market, you might find yourself with negative equity for a long time until the market reignites.
Visiting the area in person will give you important subjective information that can’t be found online, as well. If you’re used to going shopping in malls or grocery shopping or stores, you might want to look at places that are close to them. Do the commute, drive around, walk around. Get as much of a feel for what it’s actually like being in the area as you can.
Preparation and Your Dallas Real Estate Agent
When it comes down to it, whether this is your first time searching for homes in Dallas or you’re an experienced home buyer, having an experienced Dallas realtor on your side is the best way to maximize your decision-making abilities. When considering your next Dallas real estate move, don’t go it alone. Contact us today at Live and Love Your Home and get expert Dallas real estate market advice and so much more!
Although not originally from Texas, it has become my home after 30+ years of living primarily in the DFW area. After working several years in retail, I fell into the real estate industry while I was g....
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