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First-Time Homebuyers – It’s time to get ready!

As you may have heard on the news recently, home sales, construction of new homes and the sales prices have all jumped in June; are you ready to take advantage of these events?

Here are a few things that you need to keep in mind:

First, beat the looming deadline…

One of the biggest incentives that have ever been offered to first-time buyers is the federal government’s $8,000 income tax credit.  If you are ready to buy a new home and you qualify for this incentive, you must complete the purchase of your new home before December 1, 2009.

Secondly, be sure to not only look at a home’s price…

Many people are trying to time the market’s bottom and all I can say is “Good Luck!” Being around this business for years, I can tell you that timing the real estate market, just like most other markets, is just about impossible because of all the variables that go into it. Some good words from cnnmoney.com on this topic are as follows:

“…if you want to estimate the market’s ability to recover, consider the following factors: the local jobs climate. Where there is unemployment, you’ll find more foreclosures and lower home prices. Scan local newspapers for large layoffs in companies that are based in the area.

 

Consider too where your area is in the market cycle. Have prices stabilized? Are they still going down? How much inventory is on the market? A good realtor can help you weigh these issues.

 

If the inventory is growing at a slower rate, or shrinking, then the market in that area is stabilizing says housing expert Brad Inman.

 

Next, walk through the town and look at the condition of the neighborhood. How many homes are abandoned? Are people taking care of their yard? Talk to the neighbors. That is a valuable source of information.”

 

Lastly, be sure to use your leverage to get what you want…

Clearly, you must know what you can afford and I can help you figure out what that is; just give me a call.  Simply because homes are selling for much less than they used to, doesn’t mean it’s a bargain for you, personally.  In some markets, required down payments can be as much as 20% of the purchase price.

As a buyer, you need to know that you have leverage over many of the sellers that are out there; particularly those that are desperate. Ask for seller concessions, use the Rural Housing program or other government or non-profit organizations in your area.

To find out what you qualify for, please contact me for a personal, free analysis of your options.

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