Two of the buyers that I am currently working with are clients of mine who each bought a house though me less than a year ago.  This is the first time in my relatively short real estate career I have had anyone come back and say they bought the wrong house...and it has happened twice in the last month. It has made me wonder how such a costly mistake could be made and what advice I should give to buyers to help prevent it from happening again. 

First and foremost I would tell anyone thinking about purchasing a home to sit down and create a list of must haves in their new home.  Secondly,  prioritize that list in two ways--things that are cosmetic and therefore can be changed and those items that cannot be changed or "fixed'. 

For instance, you "must" have granite counter tops.  Of course, the best case scenario would be to find that perfect home with granite counters.  But, let's say you find a home that fits all the criteria on your list except for the granite counters.  Given that this is something that CAN be fixed, and, if there isn't another home that fits so perfectly with what want in a home, then the lack of granite counters shouldn't be a deal breaker.

However, let's say a quiet setting is high on your list because you are sensitive to noise.  You find find a home that has granite counters and everything else on your list EXCEPT it is close to a busy highway.  Then this is a house that no matter how perfect it may be otherwise, is one that you should most likely walk away from or risk living each day regretting your decision to buy it.  Perhaps the noise is at a level that can be masked to some degree with a water feature -- then you need to consider if the noise will grow louder over time as the community continues to grow.  Is this a risk you are willing to take?

Lastly I would advise a buyer to make several visits to the home at different times of the day and to use all of their senses each time to evaluate whether this is really the right home.  How do you feel when you are in the home; what noises do you hear; what do you see as you walk around the inside and outside of the home; and what do you smell inside and outside the home? 

In summary, as you begin your home buying adventure, come armed with a list of everything you MUST have in your new home.  Understand which items on the list are cosmetic in nature and therefore could be changed, if necessary, as opposed to those that cannot not be changed or "fixed".  By NOT compromising on the items that can't be changed, chances are you will live happily ever after in the home of your dreams. 

   JUDI MONDAY, CRS         


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