Consider following these ideas to make the buying and selling process run a bit smoother. Having a plan, and following it through with it, will help you stay focused on your goal to buying or selling.
Think about fixing up the house—now. Start a list of home improvement projects to lessen the time it will take to prepare your home for the market. Remember that we see don’t always see the wear and tear but prospective buyers are looking through your house with a fine tooth comb.
Clean out the house now. Save time now, get some boxes and start to organize some of the clutter. Give yourself time to reminisce before belongings move into the trash pile!
Price my house as though we’re living in 2011 and not 2007. Hire a real estate professional to research and see what comparable houses are going for in your neighborhood and price accordingly. Your property needs to be competitively priced or else it’s not going to sell.
Seek pre-approval for mortgage before looking to buy. Interview several lenders and get pre-approved for a mortgage. By doing this you can eliminate property that’s out of your price range.
Clean up credit score before looking to buy. Increase the odds of getting pre-approved. If you won’t buy your house until the last half of 2011 or maybe even 2012, then at least look into cleaning up your credit history.
Number crunch and buy a house I can afford. Pull out the calculator and figure out what you can afford in a mortgage, points, bills etc.
Think long term. Look at the community around your prospective home. Ask yourself whether you can imagine living here in ten years. You want a neighborhood that you can grow into.
Interview more than one real estate agent. Find the agent that you would like to work with and who will tell you want you need to hear. Realize that not every agent and client are a perfect match so interviewing more than one is a good idea.
Make this a business transaction and not an emotional decision. Sometimes this is much easier said than done! Remember that this is a financial transaction– if you can keep that in mind, you’ll likely come through the process in better shape.
Get a pre-inspection for my own house, before selling it. This is something worth considering if you’ve been living in your house for awhile and know it needs some work. Getting a handle on items needing repair before selling puts you above the competition. Knowledge is power!
Think about moving and other logistics now. Getting moving rates and insurance quotes will help make your decisions at the move much smoother. Although it’s hard to think of everything start a running list to keep on track.