Ready to Buy? This Q & A Can Help You Decide
The decision to buy real estate is a complicated matter. There is no easy formula, or advice to give a potential buyer. There are, however, some fundamental points to consider before buying a home, investment property, or undeveloped land.
For most people it is the purchase of a home that creates the most questions. Unless a person is in the military, or has a job that involves periodic relocation, the purchase of a home is a rare and unusual event. Many people live in the same home for most or all of their lives. When an individual or couple is ready to purchase, they need to consider many factors and there are several considerations that can be addressed in a question and answer format.
The purchase of real estate is not like buying a car. Once you own that home and go through all the expense and trouble of moving in, it is difficult and generally a bad idea from a monetary viewpoint to move quickly to another home. Careful and informed thought needs to go into buying real estate. There is generally a good time and a bad time to buy. Not everyone has the luxury of waiting for the good time. Some people need to buy and have no choice, so they need a good question and answer discussion to help discern the correct way to buy real estate.
HOW DOES BUYING REAL ESTATE WORK?
The first point to remember about real estate is everything must be in writing. A contract to buy or sell land must be put down on paper and signed by all parties. A person who is not quite ready to buy can make inquiries, visit properties, and ask all kinds of questions without assuming any legal liability. This allows individuals to check out the real estate market without any risk. Buyers will find that different sellers have different motivations. Some are looking for a quick sale, and thus are likely to accept a lesser price. Others are in no hurry and will not consider lowering the price. The buyer who is ready initiates the real estate sale by making an offer to purchase in writing. That starts the process so the buyer needs to be fully ready before making an offer. The offer will contain a description of the property, the proposed sales price, the amount of down payment money to be placed in escrow, a proposed closing date, and any other information that is relevant to the sale. An example in the sale of a home would be a list of personal property to go with the home such as a refrigerator. The seller then comes back with a counter offer. The seller could accept the initial offer, but that is rare. The seller will almost always want to get a little more money or add some provision or clause to the contract. Negotiations go back and forth until the parties are in total agreement. The contract is then signed. Lawyers and lenders take over, and the deal moves forward to a closing date.
QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS
Here a few of the most frequently asked questions about the right time to buy real estate:
Q: Are falling prices always the right time to buy?
A: Falling prices are great, but the right time is when an individual is ready.
Q: How will a person know when they are ready to buy?
A: One sure sign is that the money is right. Both the down payment and loan are in place.
Q: Is there a set amount to put in escrow with an offer to purchase?
A: No. A real estate agent will offer guidance. Put down enough so the seller knows you are serious.
Q: Can a person wait too long to be ready to buy?
A: Yes. A good time to buy can pass by. Every parcel of land is unique. Do not miss out on the home or real estate that meets the buyer's needs.
Q: Who can tell a person when they are ready to buy?
A: Each individual person, after careful research and consideration, will know better than anyone else when they are ready to buy land.