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Things A First Time Buyer Should Consider

by Linnea Lavell

You have finally made the decision to stop paying someone else’s mortgage and buy your own home.  Congratulations!  Buying a home is one of the largest, most important financial decisions you will make during your lifetime.  You can read up on what to expect, Google “things to know as a first time home buyer”, ask your friends and family for advice but each real estate transaction is unique so there may be some surprises-some welcome, some not-along the way.

When you have made the decision to purchase a home, it is important to assemble a team of professionals that can walk you through the process and explain (sometimes multiple times) what each step in the process is and what to expect.  Your lender, Realtor, closing company or attorney all need to communicate well with each other as well as with you.   

Interview lenders and Realtors to make sure you are comfortable with their knowledge and expertise prior to making a final selection.  Not all personalities get along well and during this transaction it is important that you are working with people you trust and believe are competent to help you accomplish your goal of home ownership.

As a first-time home buyer, you are going to have questions so your team of professionals need to be able to answer those questions and provide you with the information you need to make you feel comfortable and secure with your decisions you are making. 

You are going to have documents and situations you have never heard of or had to think about before.  What is a Good Faith Estimate? Who do I use for a home inspection? Do I need to be concerned about lead based paint?  What is radon gas?  Is mold something I need to be concerned about?  What are closing costs and who pays for them?  The list goes on and on.  Your Realtor is going to be able to answer the majority of your questions or will direct you to the appropriate party be it the lender, closing company or other party involved in the transaction to get the answers you need. 

It is important to remember that once you purchase a home, you are going to have expenses you may not have considered while you were renting.  You are now responsible for maintaining the home, maintaining the lawn, paying Home Owner's Association fees (if they apply) and are responsible for any pest control on the property.  It is always a good idea to have an emergency fund in case something decides to stop working or breaks that is not covered by a home warranty or insurance.  

This may all seem like too much to think about but there is nothing like homeownership.   You are building equity in something that you can call you own.   Do your homework.  Ask questions. Research homeownership and what first time buyers should be concerned about.  Most importantly find a good quality team of professionals to work with so your first experience buying a home is all you dreamed it would be.

 

 

Get Your Home Ready for the Market Place

by Linnea Lavell

Often the first step in selling your home is making sure it’s ready for the market in the first place. Some sellers rush a home onto the market without properly preparing it for the public. By considering early on improvements that you may need to make, you can save yourself future headaches.

The amount and kind of work that you should do depends largely on the price you intend to ask, the time you have to sell, and the current condition of the house. If your house is in good condition and you’re pressed for time, do the small things that can make a big cosmetic difference. New paint, re-grouted tile in the bathroom and kitchen, new carpet in the major traffic areas-these are the kinds of things that can be relatively inexpensive for you yet important to potential buyers.

As far as major projects are concerned, avoid making improvements that may come down to a matter of taste. For instance, most buyers will appreciate newly tiled bathroom floors or brand new professional roofing, but not all buyers will be swayed by an expensive swimming pool in the back yard. Make sure that the investment in time and money you make for any project will be recouped in the sale of your house. This HGTV article outlines which home improvements pay off.

Once your home is ready to list for sale, make sure you find a real estate professional that has knowledge of your area and how to best market your home.

Still have questions, check out this video by Consumer Reports for additional tips and information on boosting your home’s selling price.

 

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Contact Information

Photo of Linnea Lavell Real Estate
Linnea Lavell
Lavell Realty, LLC
P.O. Box 1243
Little Elm TX 75068
214-280-5900
214-810-5906
Fax: 877-488-1740