Once your initial due diligence efforts are being completed, it is now time to start looking at properties in earnest. At this point it becomes crucial for you to have obtained from your lender a pre-qualification or pre-approval letter that details at least three items: tipe of loan awarded, maximum purchase amount, and downpayment amount required. This information determines the particulars of the home that you can afford (square footage, number of bedrooms, etc), and also which specific communities would fit your circumstances. Most buyers have at least 3 different “pressure points” that affect directly their purchase decision:
- The economics. That is to say, how much house they can afford based on their income/debt, credit score and cash reserves situation.
- The geography. Meaning, what part of town is the preferable one, usually due to proximity to a job, or zoning to a specific school or school district.
- The lifestyle. Buyers are looking for vastly different social, cultural and lifestyle choices that inform their purchase decisions.
Start your search broadly
Get to know the different search options available on the internet for consumers (We of course recommend the www.har.com website as the main and most accurate source for available properties). Drive by the neighborhoods that interest you, and get an idea of driving distances to work, to shopping malls, houses of worship, and other places that are a part of your life
Narrow it with our specialized tools
You will realize quickly that it is hard to keep up with the Real Estate dynamic pace, and that the “needle in the haystack” approach is not the way to go. Let us define for you one or more “automated searches” based on your specific search criteria, so that you will be able to follow the market on a real-time basis without losing your mind!
Get to a manageable list of “semifinalists”
For this purpose, we just have to tailor one or more “showings” to have you and your family take a look inside these candidate homes. Our typical “showing tour” lasts 3 hours, and we can typically look at 5-7 properties in that timeframe. We will schedule the showings of new properties as they enter the market, to give the buyer a chance to see as many properties as he or she feels is needed to make a sensible, no-pressure decision.
When you fall in love with a property, that’s usually the one!
By following the systematic search approach described above, the buyer will clearly realize which property is indeed the “right one” at the due time. When that’s the case, we encourage the buyer to make an offer, and not second-guess his or her first instincts. Go for it!