I’m a fan of lists, so here are ten things I’ve learned working in real estate this year:
1. Buying a home is an emotional process. There is nothing more expensive than your home. It’s the single biggest purchase you will make, and it’s easy to get wrapped up in the emotionality of it all. Since becoming a homeowner and working with so many clients who have bought/sold a home this year, I can assure you there’s no greater choice you will make. It is so important to surround yourself with someone who isn’t just a “yes man.” You need someone who can tell you straight if you’re about to make a good investment.
2. The market is ever-changing; there’s an art to getting the best deal. Moving is easiest in the summer – we have found a lot of people move between Memorial Day and Labor Day. Depending on your situation, a professional can advise you on the best time to buy/sell. Which brings me to my next point:
3. It’s impossible to predict the market. Journalists report on the real estate market after its happened – there’s no crystal ball to predict the real estate market. The more you utilize the opinion of a veteran realtor, the better your experience will be.
4. Looking for houses is fun. Finding a home is like trying on shoes. You can try on thirty pairs, but when it’s the perfect fit, you’ll know immediately. You have to act fast, but it’s exciting and comfortable, all at the same time.
5. The paperwork is there to protect you. The paperwork is endless, but everything you sign is there to protect you and your purchase. When I was signing the closing documents for my home, I was signing for over an hour – and we didn’t have any paperwork for a house we were selling! While it can feel laborious, the disclosures and wire fraud alerts are important to keep you and your purchase safe.
6. Owning property is the quickest way to build wealth. My husband and I lived in a two-bedroom apartment in Los Angeles before we moved to Denver. Our mortgage payment is the same cost as our rent was. While we lived in a desirable area, now the same payment we’ve made monthly for the past few years is going towards owning our home outright. If I could give anyone advice, I’d say the sooner you buy, the quicker you can build wealth.
7. If you’re working with an agent, know they are working around the clock to make sure your transaction is seamless. I mentioned earlier that I was looking for a job that was flexible. While my days are somewhat flexible, there is no set schedule to getting work done. The amount of times I’ve been up at 2:00 in the morning finalizing contracts, sending emails or coordinating showings was more frequent than you’d imagine. Any realtor you work with is committed to working for you around the clock.
8. There’s a definite risk in working in real estate. When the market is down, a realtor’s job becomes twice as hard. If you are working with a realtor who has been in the business for some time, they have figured out how to sustain themselves and their career.
9. A good realtor will take on any client, regardless of situation. Whether you have a down payment or not, a realtor’s job is to make sure you get the property that you can afford and maintain. No matter what your financial situation is, a relator is there to help.
10. There’s nothing like getting the keys to your first home. The day we closed on our home was a huge accomplishment. We loved walking through the empty house getting so excited to be homeowners.
Whatever your dream living situation may be, we would be honored to help you make it come true. Have a wonderful holiday season!