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Saturday, 20 July 2019
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This Old House - Do-it-Yourself

The Worst Home Buying Advice

Written by Posted On Thursday, 07 March 2019 09:03
Don't Follow Bad Home Buying Advice Don't Follow Bad Home Buying Advice

Don't Follow Bad Home Buying Advice

It does not matter if you are a first-time buyer or returning to the real estate market after a break, you can probably benefit from some solid advice. Laws and regulation change all of the time. Staying up to date with the best home buying advice is not always easy.

I am going to share with you some quick pointers on things you shouldn't do as a home buyer. By following good advice, you can increase the odds your transaction will go smoothly. When you follow bad advice things can go horribly wrong in a real estate transaction! Sometimes mistakes can become so obvious you'll want to puke. Don't be one of those buyers.

Dual Agency is Horrible For Buyers

Dual agency regulations are being scrutinized by many US states. In fact, a number of states have banned the practice of dual agency. Not sure what dual agency is and how it works? The article at Maximum Real Estate Exposure, gives an in-depth explanation that you should definitely take the time to read. In a nutshell, dual agency is when a buyer goes to the listing agent directly rather than having their own buyer's agent. Some people call this single agent dual agency which is different than designated agency.

While you might have direction communication with the seller's agent, they do not represent you. They cannot offer you any guidance before or during the transaction. For example, what you should offer on the home.

It sounds like a great idea on the surface of it, however, when it all comes down to buying a home, it may not be such a good idea. You really need to go ask yourself who's best interests a dual agency agreement serves? It certainly helps your real estate agent as he will earn more money out of the arrangement. But, does it serve well you as a buyer?

Dual agency agreements don't do the buyer any favors. By allowing dual agency you dramatically increase the odds you will make a big mistake like overpaying for the home. Going directly to the listing agent being beneficial is a common real estate agent myth. Don't be suckered by the foolishness.

To Renovate or Not to Renovate

Many first-time home buyers make the classical mistake of rushing into things. They see a new place and start thinking about how they would like to change things right away. To "personalize" your home may sound great on the surface of it, but in fact, it is better to get to know your new home first. Not only can you end up wasting your money, but there could be a good reason for not jumping the gun.

For example, some people might think they want to remove a wall. What they don't realize is that a significant structural change might not be what they really want after all. Buyer's remorse then sets in.

A more open floor plan may look great, but what happens when you find out that the smell of cooking really annoys you when you want to watch the TV curled up on the couch? It would mean having to start all over again.

Get used to the "feel" of any new home before you start making changes. There could be a good reason for that slightly quirky layout. Focus your changes when you first move in to more personalized items like changing a paint color or replacing a carpet. These improvements make a difference when selling as well which is always beneficial.

Never Skip Title Insurance

Buying a home is expensive, and most people are given the advice to save money wherever they can. One thing that is worth is weight in gold is title insurance. This simple insurance makes sure that you avoid legal issues which relate to the property before it was yours.

Claims are rare, but when they do happen, they can be very costly. Not taking out title insurance could potentially cost you a significant amount of money. Defects in a home's title can and do happen. The insurance is well worth the cost. Many buyers say to themselves "I won't ever have a use for this". You will be asked at the closing or possibly before if you want title insurance. The answer should be YES!

Out of State Brokers and Lenders

Another way buyers can run into problems is when they use an out of state lender because they see a rate that is so appealing. Often these so called deals are not really deals at all. Most of the time you are better off working with a local lender you can see face to face. Home buying is complex and being able to communicate with a real person is valuable.

Most of the time you don't save money by using an out of state broker or lender. Take a look at the excellent guide on how to choose a mortgage lender. You will see the best tips for picking a lender that's right for you. More often than not you will find the financial terms you're looking for right in your own backyard.

Making a Low Offer

Of course, you have a limited budget and don't want to spend any necessary cash, but should you make a low offer? It may be tempting to do so, but here is a quirky fact, you may insult the seller. The end result could cost you a good property deal, and you need to ask yourself if that is what you want.

Quite often a buyer will make an offer that is so insulting the seller will have not interest in dealing with the person even if they raise their offer significantly.  You could easily lose out on a home that you really want to purchase.

Time is money and you should make a "fair" offer. Also, be prepared to justify why you have made a low offer with your real estate agent. Perhaps the property you are looking at need some repairs. Explain them carefully and don't get emotionally involved.

A Close Date is A Close Date

Should you let a homeowner stay in the property that you have just closed on to sort a few things out? The truth is that this is not a good idea. Most attorneys will advise against wha't called a use and occupancy agreement. A close date is a close date, and you want the homeowner to move out on that agreed date.

By letting a seller stay in a property past the date you now own it, you're opening yourself up to a can of potential worms. Keep your odds low of getting into trouble whenever you can. Only allow a seller to stay if the circumstances really dictate it.

Final Thoughts

To buy a property you have to be a little bit more John Wayne and less Mary Poppins. Always listen to your real estate agent if you trust them. He or she will give you the best home buying advice for your personal circumstances. This is after all one of the most expensive investments you will make in your life. By following all the home buying guidance here, you'll be well on your way to an enjoyable purchase.

Other Real Estate Resources Worth Reading

Use these additional home buying resources to make the best possible decisions with your home purchase. Hopefully, you won't follow any bad home buying advice and have a smooth transaction. Best of luck with your home buying journey!

About the author: Bill Gassett is a nationally recognized Real Estate leader who has been helping people buy and sell Metrowest Massachusetts real estate for the past thirty-two plus years. Bill has been one of the top RE/MAX Realtors in New England for the past decade.

In 2018 he was the #1 RE/MAX real estate agent in Massachusetts. His real estate advice has been featured on, CNBC, RIS Media, National Association of Realtors, Inman News, Placester, RESAAS, Credit Sesame and others.

Bill covers real estate sales in the following Massachusetts communities: Ashland, Bellingham, Douglas, Framingham, Franklin, Grafton, Holliston, Hopkinton, Hopedale, Medway, Mendon, Milford, Millbury, Millville, Natick, Northborough, Northbridge, Shrewsbury, Southborough, Sutton, Wayland, Westborough, Whitinsville, Worcester, Upton and Uxbridge MA.

Reach out for his advice anytime.

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Bill Gassett

One of the top RE/MAX agents in New England over the last decade plus. Providing exceptional real estate services to buyers and sellers in the Metrowest Massachusetts area including the following communities: Ashland, Bellingham, Douglas, Framingham, Franklin, Grafton, Holliston, Hopkinton, Hopedale, Medway, Mendon, Milford, Millbury, Millville, Northborough, Northbridge, Shrewsbury, Southborough, Sutton, Wayland, Westborough, Whitinsville, Worcester, Upton and Uxbridge MA.

See my real estate website at Maximum Real Estate Exposure - one of the most visited real estate sites in Massachusetts.

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