Shopping For A Home During COVID19

Dated: 05/18/2020

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Shopping for a Home During COVID-19

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Were you shopping for a new home when the COVID crisis started? Have you put your homebuying dreams on hold out of concern that the financial market will take an even bigger turn for the worse?

While it is true the market has taken a big hit in recent months.  However, that does not mean the housing market is in crisis along with it. In fact, history shows that down markets are traditionally a better time to shop for a home.

In Washington we are able to shop for homes in person, just taking extra precautions.  Virtual, 360, tours are being posted by some real estate brokers, but we are able to actually go out and look at the property. The tips below can help you keep your dreams of homeownership alive during this difficult time.

Turn to the Experts

The first step is to inquire about your home purchasing interest with a real estate broker (like me). As an industry expert, I will be able to guide you through the process and will be honest with you about your prospects.  I pride myself for being honest and working with integrity.

Be Prepared.

Just because buyers may have the advantage in an economic slowdown, does not mean that you will not have to act quickly to get a good deal; to the contrary. With a limited inventory of homes, it is not uncommon for bidding wars to start. 

First and most important thing is to start preparing your finances now and apply to be pre-approved for a mortgage, so the process is not delayed. With multiple offers coming in on one property, your preapproval may set you out/above from the others.  Once your finances are in order, you will be in a better position to make an offer that will be enticing to sellers.

Just Ask.

That is my moto … just ask!  You can’t get what you don’t ask for.

If a seller is really looking to sell quickly, they may be more willing to comply with add-ons to the deal, such as paying for closing costs. As the buyer, you will likely have an upper hand when it comes to finalizing the sale. Don’t worry about the negotiation part – that’s my job.  I will help you through the transaction, step-by-step, so don’t be afraid to let the home seller know what you want.

Know Your Limits.

Buyers may still be looking to negotiate, but don’t give in on your budget because you’re worried a better deal won’t come along. You put in a $285k bid on a house, and you really want this house; then a bidding war starts.  You are approved for over $300k, but you don’t want your payments to be high.  You want the home so bad you are willing to increase your offer, but don’t think about the monthly payments.  That’s my job … to bring to your attention what increasing your payments would mean, and to remind you that you are going off budget. 

There should still be plenty of people looking to sell, and the first home you like that comes along won’t necessarily be the last. Take your time and weigh your options to ensure you make a choice you are comfortable with. At the end of the day, it is the home you will have to live in—it should be the right fit for you and your family.

What is most important to remember is that whether it’s a buyer’s or a seller’s market, there will always be homes available and the real estate industry will keep moving. Don’t sacrifice your dreams of homeownership. Be patient and use these tips to have a positive experience.

Let's go shopping for your next home ... text, email, or call me.  I'm happy to help - just ask! 

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Katrina Williams

I am a real estate broker serving all of Puget Sound. I believe honesty & transparency are crucial in real estate. I will be by your side through the transaction, and available to answer any of your q....

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