Real Estate in Raleigh

8 Simple Secrets to Avoid Costly Mistakes Buying Your Dream Home

8 Simple Secrets to Avoid Costly Mistakes Buying Your Dream Home

So you’ve finally decided to buy your next home. Problem is while you were making up your mind, other fence sitters jumped into the home market too. Now you may be facing some competition for the best properties. What to do? Just because there are other buyers in the market doesn’t mean you can’t come away with your dream house. But to be a successful buyer in today’s real estate market you’re going to need help.

Your first best move is to know a few inside tricks. As experienced real estate professionals we have many more than eight ways to increase your chances of landing a prize property despite heavy competition. The following tested tips will increase your market savvy and sharpen your competitive position. Then you’ll be ready to act quickly the minute you see that perfect house.

Step 1: Get Pre-Approved

To be pre-approved for a mortgage loan is your first step. You will go through what amounts to a mini-application process (paperwork, credit check, etc.) prior to shopping for a house. Pre-approval is more effective than pre-qualification, which only gives you a rough idea of the amount a lender will lend you—assuming no hang-ups in the credit and income checking process. When you are pre-approved, it’s like carrying around a suitcase full of money. In the eyes of the seller, pre-approval makes you a very desirable “cash” buyer. That’s a real advantage over another buyer whose financing is uncertain.

Beat the Competition to the Newest Listings

Once you know your specific price range, your real estate agent can regularly do a computerized market sweep for new listings. You should receive a hot list of attractive properties as they come on the market. This will give you a head start on other buyers because you will get the listings before they are advertised. Timing can be a vital part of your home buying experience.

Do Your Research

Make yourself a “value expert” by investigating local properties to get an idea of price points, listing-to-sale-price ratios, hottest areas, and best places for a bargain. Once you know what your money will buy, your real estate agent can add up-to-the-minute knowledge of what comparable properties sell for in specific neighbourhoods and what impact specific features have on price. Working with a good agent will guarantee you the best price and terms.

Have your Agent Present the Offer in Person

Nobody wants their offer lingering on a fax machine in the listing agent’s office while other buyers are putting offers on the seller’s kitchen table. When the situation calls for that personal touch, you’ll gain an advantage by having your agent present your offer in person. He or she may pick up critical intelligence on any competing offers by being on the scene.

Prove you Mean Business

An excellent way of showing the seller you are serious about buying the house is to include a good faith deposit along with the offer you make. This deposit could be as much as 5% of the bid price and surely will attract the seller’s attention.

Stay Cool

When deciding on your dream home you do not have to over pay to get it. Sure, you may have to offer something other than the asking price, such as paying some or all points, inspections, closing costs, or offering a settlement date that fits the seller’s timetable. If you over pay now and have to sell your house in the future it will be harder for you to get back equal value.

Keep It Simple And Clean

You want to make sure that your contract isn’t sloppy or cluttered with contingencies such as repairs. Keep contingencies to a minimum. Even better, offer to be helpful, take care of repairs, order an inspection in 48 hours, or be willing to take care of any required local certificates such as smoke detectors and water safety. Be open and flexible to try to help accommodate the needs of the seller.

Don’t be a Lone Wolf

What you need most in today’s market is experienced professional guidance. As your neighbourhood real estate specialists we can help you get pre-approved, find a prize property, and negotiate the best deal on your next home no matter how heated the competition. Call us today. We’ll help you be a cool customer.


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  1. Photo of 2221 Thornblade Drive, Raleigh, NC 27604-6440 (MLS # 2289965)
    25
    2 beds,  2 full, 1 half baths
    1,064 sqft   lot 2,178 sqft
    Walk Score® 7
    Listed with Opendoor Brokerage LLC
    MLS 2289965
  2. Photo of 608 Piper Street, Durham, NC 27704 (MLS # 2289964)
    23
    3 beds,  1 full bath
    998 sqft   lot 7,841 sqft
    Walk Score® 48
    Listed with Grow Local Realty LLC
    MLS 2289964
  3. Photo of 4542 Revere Drive, Raleigh, NC 27609 (MLS # 2289963)
    14
    4 beds,  3 full, 1 half baths
    2,850 sqft   lot 15,246 sqft
    Walk Score® 29
    Listed with Fanjoy Real Estate
    MLS 2289963
  4. Photo of 48 Eagle Pointe Lane, Clayton, NC 27520 (MLS # 2289962)
    28
    3 beds,  2 full baths
    1,607 sqft   lot 24,829 sqft
    Walk Score® 8
    Listed with RE/MAX United
    MLS 2289962
  5. Photo of 8943 Commons Townes Drive, Raleigh, NC 27616-8084 (MLS # 2289960)
    29
    3 beds,  2 full, 1 half baths
    1,642 sqft   lot 1,742 sqft
    Walk Score® 21
    Listed with HomeTowne Realty
    MLS 2289960
  6. Photo of 1001 Watersmeet Lane, Raleigh, NC 27614 (MLS # 2289959)
    19
    5 beds,  6 full, 1 half baths
    8,645 sqft   lot 1.02 ac
    Walk Score® 0
    Listed with Coldwell Banker Advantage
    MLS 2289959
  7. Photo of 508 N Kennelman Circle, Wendell, NC 27591 (MLS # 2289957)
    20
    5 beds,  3 full, 1 half baths
    2,647 sqft   lot 7,841 sqft
    Walk Score® 1
    Listed with Parrish Realty Company of Knig
    MLS 2289957
  8. Photo of 285 Gray Ghost Street, Benson, NC 27504 (MLS # 2289956)
    23
    3 beds,  2 full baths
    1,222 sqft   lot 10,454 sqft
    Walk Score® 3
    Listed with Keller Williams Realty Platinum
    MLS 2289956
  9. Photo of 217 Breedlove Avenue, Durham, NC 27703 (MLS # 2289955)
    29
    2 beds,  1 full bath
    1,052 sqft   lot 22,521 sqft
    Walk Score® 19
    Listed with Howard Perry & Walston Realtor
    MLS 2289955
  10. Photo of 801 Old Wilson Road, Nashville, NC 27856-1633 (MLS # 2289953)
    18
    3 beds,  1 full bath
    1,032 sqft   lot 22,216 sqft
    Walk Score® 46
    Listed with HomeTowne Realty Clayton East
    MLS 2289953
  11. Photo of 2316 Apex Peakway, Apex, NC 27502 (MLS # 2289950)
    25
    3 beds,  2 full, 1 half baths
    1,948 sqft   lot 1,742 sqft
    Walk Score® 47
    Listed with Redfin Corporation
    MLS 2289950
  12. Photo of 910 N Guthrie Avenue, Durham, NC 27703 (MLS # 2289949)
    3
    2 beds,  1 full bath
    855 sqft   lot 13,242 sqft
    Walk Score® 71
    Listed with 501 Nest Realty
    MLS 2289949
  13. Photo of 2518 Ross Road, Durham, NC 27703 (MLS # 2289947)
    3
    2 beds,  1 full bath
    1,056 sqft   lot 22,825 sqft
    Walk Score® 36
    Listed with 501 Nest Realty
    MLS 2289947
  14. Photo of 2551 Drake Avenue, Durham, NC 27705 (MLS # 2289945)
    6
    4 beds,  3 full, 1 half baths
    2,217 sqft   lot 9,583 sqft
    Walk Score® 19
    Listed with Longleaf Realty LLC
    MLS 2289945
  15. Photo of 108 Stansbury Court, Cary, NC 27518 (MLS # 2289944)
    25
    3 beds,  2 full, 1 half baths
    2,222 sqft   lot 11,761 sqft
    Walk Score® 2
    Listed with Weichert REALTORS-Triangle
    MLS 2289944
  16. Photo of 5809 Neuse Wood Drive, Raleigh, NC 27616 (MLS # 2289943)
    27
    3 beds,  2 full, 1 half baths
    1,417 sqft   lot 3,920 sqft
    Walk Score® 6
    Listed with Keller Williams Preferred Realty
    MLS 2289943
  17. 3 beds,  1 full bath
    1,600 sqft   lot 15,682 sqft
    Walk Score® 38
    Listed with Allen Tate/Pittsboro
    MLS 2289941
  18. Photo of 416 Calderbank Way, Cary, NC 27513 (MLS # 2289939)
    30
    6 beds,  5 full, 1 half baths
    4,722 sqft   lot 13,068 sqft
    Walk Score® 9
    Listed with eXp Realty LLC
    MLS 2289939
  19. Photo of 1105 Myers Point Drive, Morrisville, NC 27560 (MLS # 2289938)
    6
    4 beds,  3 full, 1 half baths
    2,122 sqft   lot 2,178 sqft
    Walk Score® 24
    Listed with Today Homes Realty NC, LLC
    MLS 2289938
  20. Photo of 113 Mystic Quartz Lane, Holly Springs, NC 27540 (MLS # 2289937)
    30
    5 beds,  4 full baths
    3,560 sqft   lot 10,019 sqft
    Walk Score® 0
    Listed with eXp Realty LLC
    MLS 2289937
  21. Photo of 3602 Carole Court, Wake Forest, NC 27587 (MLS # 2289936)
    3
    4 beds,  3 full, 1 half baths
    3,160 sqft   lot 40,075 sqft
    Walk Score® 0
    Listed with Julie Wright Realty Group LLC
    MLS 2289936
  22. Photo of 7363 Sandy Creek Drive , 4, Raleigh, NC 27615 (MLS # 2289935)
    30
    2 beds,  2 full, 1 half baths
    1,054 sqft  
    Walk Score® 29
    Listed with Linda Craft & Team, REALTORS
    MLS 2289935
  23. Photo of 108 Cedar Wren Lane, Holly Springs, NC 27540 (MLS # 2289933)
    30
    4 beds,  3 full baths
    3,077 sqft   lot 8,712 sqft
    Walk Score® 0
    Listed with Dan Ryan Builders NC, LLC
    MLS 2289933
  24. Photo of 3408 Secretariat Way, Raleigh, NC 27614 (MLS # 2289932)
    9
    4 beds,  3 full baths
    3,227 sqft   lot 10,890 sqft
    Walk Score® 27
    Listed with Stevens Realty & Relocation
    MLS 2289932
  25. Photo of 5621 Raynor Road, Garner, NC 27529 (MLS # 2289931)
    30
    2 beds,  1 full, 1 half baths
    1,192 sqft   lot 1.13 ac
    Walk Score® 4
    Listed with Re/Max Southland Realty II
    MLS 2289931
  26. Photo of 516 Hunter Way, Clayton, NC 27520 (MLS # 2289930)
    11
    3 beds,  2 full baths
    1,232 sqft   lot 9,583 sqft
    Walk Score® 1
    Listed with HomeTowne Realty
    MLS 2289930
  27. Photo of 102 Crimson Way, Pittsboro, NC 27312 (MLS # 2289928)
    28
    4 beds,  3 full baths
    2,947 sqft   lot 1.15 ac
    Walk Score® 3
    Listed with Realty World Carolina Props.
    MLS 2289928
  28. Photo of 3158 Retama Run , WB Lot 233, Apex, NC 27562 (MLS # 2289926)
    17
    3 beds,  2 full, 1 half baths
    1,836 sqft   lot 871 sqft
    Walk Score® 0
    Listed with Pulte Home Company LLC
    MLS 2289926
  29. Photo of 112 Cedar Wren Lane, Holly Springs, NC 27540 (MLS # 2289925)
    30
    Price Drop
    4 beds,  3 full, 1 half baths
    2,868 sqft   lot 9,583 sqft
    Walk Score® 0
    Listed with Dan Ryan Builders NC, LLC
    MLS 2289925
  30. Photo of 2918 S Roxboro Street, Durham, NC 27707 (MLS # 2289924)
    18
    3 beds,  1 full, 1 half baths
    1,465 sqft   lot 12,720 sqft
    Walk Score® 15
    Listed with Homewood Realty, LLC
    MLS 2289924
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Listings marked with an icon are provided courtesy of the Triangle MLS, Inc. of North Carolina, Internet Data Exchange Database.

Closed (sold) listings may have been listed and/or sold by a real estate firm other than the firm(s) featured on this website. Closed data is not available until the sale of the property is recorded in the MLS. Home sale data is not an appraisal, CMA, competitive or comparative market analysis, or home valuation of any property

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Data last updated: 11/21/19 3:45 PM PST.