Common Mistakes of First-Time Homebuyers, Part 4

#4 – Not Making an Offer When They Find the Right Home

The story starts so promising. A couple is so excited to be looking at homes for the very first time! The window shopping is over; no more are they only looking at pictures online. They just received their pre-approval from their lender – they have the green light to make an offer!Home Search

That first Saturday, I show them a half-dozen homes, all of which match most of their key criteria. While each one is appealing in different ways, one stands out above the rest as the “best option so far.” But that’s only the best option so far, right? With a few thousand homes on the market, there certainly is the perfect home out there waiting for them. So they decide against putting an offer in on this home – we’ll go and look on Monday afternoon and find another good home to compare it with.

We look on Monday, but do not find any homes that are nearly as good as “the one” we visited on Saturday. The problem? The first home is no longer available because the owners accepted an offer on Sunday afternoon. That home is forever remembered as the one that got away.

Lessons & Thoughts

First time home buyers hesitate to place an offer on a home when they just begin, but many of the other buyers they are competing for homes with (yes, it is a competition) have been searching for months already. Also, many homes in the Greater Austin area are selling in only a few days which can further decrease your chances at getting the home you really want. There are a few thoughts I try to make sure my clients understand when we look at homes:

  1. There is no perfect home. I work very hard to match your needs & wants most closely with the homes available on the market, but likely no home has everything you are looking for at the price you can pay.
  2. The market is moving FAST. In April 2013, the average home sold 30% faster than in 2012 and many homes are selling within 72 hrs of going on the market. When you find a home you really like, MAKE AN OFFER!
  3. Be quick but don’t hurry. While I encourage my clients to be decisive, I never want them to feel rushed into a decision. This is the biggest purchase they have ever made – don’t rush into the wrong decision.
  4. Keep the main things the main things. I try to help my clients differentiate the “must haves” from the “nice extras” in their criteria. Because there is no perfect home (see #1), be careful to pass up on a home that really is just what you are looking for though it may be missing a few bonus amenities.

Buying a home for the first time is a very exciting time – you are choosing where you will live for years to come! When you find a great home, MAKE AN OFFER! At the end, I want my clients to know that I am here helping them make the best decision for them. If we miss out on a home they really like, I’m ok with that if they are, because ultimately all that matters is that they are happy and comfortable with whatever decision they make. If you are considering purchasing a home or would like to learn about your options drop me a note. You can also check out my other blog post – What You NEED to Know Before You Buy a Home.

by Kyle Pfaffe, REALTOR®      e:      m: 512-636-9707      w:

The Kyle Pfaffe Real Estate Team

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