Even smart people make common real estate and home buying mistakes. Here’s how to avoid them in your San Diego real estate search:
First and foremost, be flexible!
From negotiations to closing and moving dates, focus on getting the deal done, not winning every battle. Delays and complications are part of most real estate deals, as both you and the seller are completing a very time-consuming, expensive and sometimes emotional transaction. Most issues are resolvable. Monty James and the Pacific Coast Executive Realty team will make sure you are getting a good deal and will help you avoid mistakes.
Know your budget. You may be tempted or advised to borrow as much as you can. However, there is nothing worse than getting in over your head. Make sure you can afford to live comfortably in your home and are able to set money aside, especially for those unexpected home repairs. DO NOT assume your San Diego home value will keep appreciating! DO assume your San Diego home carrying costs will rise! Your annual San Diego real estate taxes and homeowners’ insurance rates will most likely rise 1% each year. Also, it is important to factor in that should you acquire an adjustable rate mortgage (ARM), your monthly mortgage payments will eventually go up.
A mortgage will make your San Diego real estate purchase happen.
Get pre-qualified for a mortgage. We suggest doing this up to a year in advance. This gives you a chance to review your credit and clear up any financial hurdles you might face BEFORE putting an offer on your San Diego home. This also gives you a chance to pre-determine a realistic mortgage payment so that you know what your price range is. If you need assistance, click here for a mortgage calculator and here to contact Charman Wilson, our recommended mortgage specialist.
Knowing what you want will make your search easier.
Determine the location(s) in which you are interested, the number of bedrooms, bathrooms, your price range, square footage, whether you prefer a condo versus a detached home, etc. Once you have determined all factors important to you, contact Monty to assist you in searching for those homes that fit your criteria. This process may take a long time so pursuing this step even up to a year in advance is advisable. This allows you to familiarize yourself with the San Diego market and be an expert by the time you are ready to move. Let Monty know if you would like to receive monthly emails on new properties that fit your criteria.
To search for homes in the San Diego area, click here.
Be open about your timing, financial condition, and lifestyle needs. Monty and his top-notch Pacific Coast Executive Realty team are trained to find solutions to fit your needs – in ways you may not have considered. You may say you want a house on a San Diego golf course, but your spouse may feel more secure in a low-maintenance, gated condo community where you can play several of the San Diego regions courses with less carrying costs. Monty is able to take the information you give him and translate that into unique property solutions.
Take a tour of San Diego.
When you are ready to start viewing properties, contact Pacific Coast Executive Realty so Monty can take you on your tour. It is important to look at as many homes as you would like with no pressure to buy. His job is NOT to "sell you a house” but to show you a home, advise you on the pros and cons and offer his opinion on whether it is well-priced. If everything fits, he will then negotiate to get you the best deal possible. Monty is able to rule out unsuitable homes before you waste time going to see them. However, he has worked with some clients for over a year and shown them 60-70 nearly perfect homes before they found "the one".
Time to make an offer.
When you find the right home, Monty and his Pacific Coast Executive Realty team will help you sit down and write up an offer. It is up to the seller to accept, reject or counter your offer. When the price and terms are agreed upon, it is time to open escrow.
What is an escrow anyway?
Escrow companies are neutral third-parties that act as a clearing house for the purchase contract and funds. They also make sure a title insurance policy is in place and assure that all paperwork is executed professionally and legally. When you take out a home loan, the money is sent to “escrow” so that the company can pay off the existing loan, all transfer fees and commissions. The remaining funds go to the seller and ownership of the property transfers to the buyer.
Home inspections are important.
Use a professional home inspector. Make sure all electric, gas, water and other utilities remain connected so you can inspect the home in working order. Monty and the Pacific Coast Executive Realty team will work with you to find a qualified home inspector to conduct a thorough review of your potential home. He will be there at all times during the inspection to handle any issues. Afterwards, the inspector will lead you through the home and point out his findings. Finally, you will be given a comprehensive written report. If any serious defects are discovered, Monty will help you negotiate a solution with the seller or pull out of escrow with no penalty if necessary.
Do a final check.
Do a final house assessment. After the seller moves everything out of the house, take a walk through the house a day or two prior to settlement. Make sure the home is ready to be transferred in good shape as outlined in the Real Estate Agreement of Sale. This will be your last chance to ensure everything in the house is in working order prior to settlement.
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Our San Diego County real estate experience can help you avoid mistakes in the home buying process.
When you are ready to start your search, email Monty at Pacific Coast Executive Realty or call (619) 922-1981.