COVID-19 has impacted everything from daily routines to big milestones like buying a house. In an “essential business only” world, some buyers have put their plans on hold. That’s hard, but it also means less competition and pressure on those still in the game.
So do NOT give up! In spite of everything, you can still take positive steps toward a new house. When you need a Netflix break, there are ways to stay informed, look at properties, and get important things done, right from home.
Top agents asked for insights for Q1 2020 report a 20% increase in buyers doing virtual tours video call tours. It’s not quite the same as being there, but you can still see everything a live house tour would show you and ask all your questions.
Aside from (hopefully) fun tours, there are other useful things to do while stuck at home, to position yourself to be ready to buy. For example, take a thoughtful look at your “Must Have” list for the house and at your finances. We all want the economy humming again, but stretching your budget too far is never a good idea.
Get pre-approved. It’s great to have your exact numbers and know your options, to take advantage of this buyer’s market. It’s the #1 thing top agents recommend buyers do NOW instead of later.
Look up property taxes where you’re buying. Some states have capped the deductions on State and Local Taxes (SALT). Agents report a little less buying in these areas, such as the Northeast, so that means less competition, but expenses to know about.
As you search and tour online, consider what makes the house a good investment, and that goes beyond how fast you fell in love with it. The smart thing is to buy for now/plan for later, so do that extra research to find a house that will sell when you’re ready. Consider these factors when a house catches your eye:
- The price history: what were the prices in previous sales?
- The “comps”: what are comparable houses selling for in that local market?
- The neighborhood: How is it zoned? Any planned development coming? What are the great local features, like shopping, stuff to do, etc.
- The house “facts”: Check into square footage, number of rooms, storage space, privacy, views, etc.
- The house “quirks”: Does the house have elements that make it stand out in a way you might like but others not so much? Is its style really different? Does it have an old-fashioned layout?
When it comes to buying a home this spring, it’s time to spring into action. You may be stuck at home, so do your homework, and get prepared to go after your dream house!
Sell Your Home Virtually GUARANTEED or We’ll Buy It!* No Need to Leave the House, No Showings, Everything done 100% Virtually. Give us a call at 352-209-0000 or click HERE for more information.