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Home Buyer Tips

This Secret Will Help You Find a Home, Even in a Hot Seller’s Market

Here’s the secret to easily finding homes as a buyer in today’s market.

The market is on fire right now for sellers, so many people have been deciding to capitalize by putting their homes up for sale. However, there’s one question stopping some homeowners from jumping into this crazy real estate situation: If I sell, where will I go?

I’ll admit, it’s difficult to find a property in today’s market. It’s helpful to have an agent who has good relationships with other agents, a good reputation, and the tenacity to make sure your offer is accepted. There’s one little secret that can help you find the perfect home with minimal competition, though: the “coming soon” status on the MLS. 

There’s a large percentage of people who don’t know about this feature, which means they don’t know when a home is about to be listed. This gives you a chance to get in and buy the property before it comes onto the open market (which is full of competition right now). I’ll give you an example: This last weekend, we were helping a buyer and found a property that was coming soon. It never hit the market. Do you know why?

There’s a large percentage of people who don’t know about this feature, which means they don’t know when a home is about to be listed.

Our client purchased it. Nobody knew about it, and we were able to get into the property, see it, write an offer, and get it accepted. We did work to eliminate any possible friction from the transaction and essentially gave them what they wanted, and everyone walked away happy. It was truly a win-win situation.

If you’re looking to buy a home, we can find you properties before they hit the market and get you into the home of your dreams. To learn more or to schedule a consultation, feel free to reach out to us. We look forward to hearing from you soon.

Why Should Buyers Act Now?

Here are the two main reasons why now is a great time to buy a home.

Is now a good time to buy? Absolutely! I could give you 10 different reasons why, but we’ll just stick to the two biggest ones for today’s blog:    

Home affordability is just as strong as it was seven years ago.   

The affordability index shows that the mortgage cost associated with a median-priced home in our Arizona market today is currently equivalent to the mortgage cost of owning a median-priced Arizona home back in 2014. That’s insane, especially considering the rapid rate at which home values have been appreciating.   

A few years before the housing crash, an economist released a study indicating that the market appreciates by about 4% year over year on average. If you were to trace this projection all the way through 2021 and pretend that the crash never happened, the median price point would have actually been higher than it is right now. In that regard, you could say that our market is still underbought (though I know that sounds crazy to hear). So long as rates stay where they are, affordability in our market will remain strong.   

What could you do if you were able to free up all the equity in your home?

  Buying now provides you with an opportunity to diversify your equity.   

A lot of homeowners have equity tied up in their homes right now. If you’re one of them, here’s my question: What could you do if you were able to free up part of that equity? Could you put kids through college? Perhaps you could pay off debt or start a rental property portfolio (side note: We always love helping people with the latter).   

If you make hundreds of thousands of dollars from the sale of your current home, the conventional wisdom says you should roll that money right into your next one. Think about this, though: What if you could use that money to purchase a higher-priced home with a monthly payment equal to or lower than what you’ve been paying while taking one-third of your equity off the table? You’ll still have to cover your down payment, of course, but a chunk of your home’s equity could go toward savings, investing, or paying off debt. It’s a strategy that sort of feels like creating money out of thin air, and it’s completely viable in today’s market. In my opinion, not enough sellers take the time to explore this option.   

Give us a call, shoot a text, or send an email our way if you have any questions; we’d love to walk you through that process and help you determine if it’s the best route for you. We’re always here to help you with any other buying, selling, or investing needs you may have.  Stay tuned for the follow-up video: Now that you know it’s a good time to buy, how do you get your offer accepted?

What Buyers and Sellers Must Know About Closing Costs

What are closing costs and what role do they play in the real estate process?
I touched on all of this and more in my most recent interview.
Looking to buy a home? Click here.
Looking to sell your home? Click here.

I recently sat down for an interview with my friend Elizabeth, who wanted me to answer a few of her questions about a very important subject: closing costs. This is something I think many homebuyers are unclear on, so I’m excited to shed some light on the topic for all of you today.

Cited below for your convenience are timestamps that will direct you to various points in the video. Feel free to watch the full message or use these timestamps to browse specific topics at your leisure:

0:53 – What exactly are closing costs?

2:41 – What do buyers and sellers each pay at closing?

5:12 – In today’s hot market, how likely is it that Phoenix sellers will agree to pay for buyers’ closing costs?

8:27 – A conclusion to today’s interview.

If you have any other questions or would like more information, feel free to give my team or me a call or send us an email. We look forward to hearing from you soon.

5 Things You Need to Do Before Buying a Flipped Home

If you’re thinking of buying a flipped home, there are five things you need to look for before you actually buy it.
Looking to buy a home? Click here.
Looking to sell your home? Click here.

Most major markets around the country are experiencing a housing boom right now, and this is bringing out the house-flippers in droves. If you’re thinking of buying a flipped house, there are five things you need to look for before you actually buy it.

First, make sure the major systems are in working order. When buying a flipped home, it’s easy to be attracted to all the dazzling aesthetic finishes, but you should spend more time inspecting the home’s mechanical items than its upgrades. These items include the HVAC unit, water heater, roof, etc. Make sure they’re in working order, as each one is expensive to replace.

Second, make sure the kitchen is not disappointing. In terms of remodeling, the room that will give you the biggest return on your investment is the kitchen. A good test of quality is whether the kitchen has a backsplash. This seems like a minuscule detail, but if the owner took the time to install a nice backsplash in the kitchen, odds are they installed nice finishes everywhere else too.

Don’t be one of those people who doesn’t notice—always check to see if the
home’s floors are even.

Third, make sure attention was paid to the details in the bathroom. The master bathroom, in particular, gives the second-highest return on investment in terms of remodeling. As with the kitchen, it’s the little details you need to look for. Another good tip here is to check if the owner installed a power-flush toilet. Much like a backsplash in the kitchen, the presence of a power-flush toilet in the master bathroom is a good sign that the seller invested a lot of time and money into the quality of the home.

Fourth, make sure the floors are even. Here in Arizona, and especially in certain parts of the valley, we have expansive soils. Over time, this can cause a home’s foundation to move. Some house-flippers elect not to spend the money to balance the home’s concrete slab and assume no one will notice because of all of the home’s other great features. Don’t be one of those people who doesn’t notice—always check to see if the home’s floors are even.

Lastly, make sure the finishes are done well and are uniform. For example, make sure the plumbing fixtures match the door hardware. If the door hardware is a certain color—let’s say brushed nickel—you need to check the hinges to see if they’re the same color. If the hinges are painted white, that’s not a good sign. That means, in all likelihood, that the remodel wasn’t high quality.

After you’ve checked these areas, don’t hesitate to give us a call so we can walk you through the rest of the home buying process. It’s our goal to make sure you get the best value possible, and we’re experts at doing this.

As always, if you have any more questions about this or any other real estate topic, feel free to reach out to us as well. We’d love to help you.