We love the home buying process, and taking our buyers on a home tour is one of the best days in the Real Estate Business. When a Buyer is out shopping, the excitement of a new home can sometimes get the best of you. It seems like some are so excited that they just want to jump on out there and buy what feels good to them. Maybe the location is perfect, maybe that 3 car garage is just what the doctor ordered for the husband, maybe the big kitchen has been a lifelong dream for the wife, and best of all, it is under their budget. Just like playing poker, you got to know when to run. Count your blessings that the RockStar Group has helped over 300 families purchase a new home, and we know when to hold it and we know when to RUN!! I bet you might think a coat of new paint, or some new carpet and appliances makes the home, don’t let these things fool you into believing that the time is right for you to get on the bus to home ownership. For a home to be worthwhile, it and the neighborhood, must have certain qualities.
Warning Signs to RUN~
I love it when you can walk right into a home and know immediately that you should just turn around, get the hell out of Dodge, and I am not talking Kansas. Before we let you sign an offer to purchase, we encourage our clients to dig a little deeper, find out the age of the roof, the age of the Air Conditioner, the age of the hot water heater, and the age of the appliances. Paint and carpet are the least of our worries. These are the easiest to repair/replace. We get our client to open and shut doors, making sure they do not open or close by themselves.. this could be a foundation issue. When this happens, get out quick.
Remember that real estate is truly one of Location, Price, and Condition. The main thing is location, location, location. You can offer a lower price and make the cosmetic changes inside and out, you just can’t pick up the house and move it. Here area few things to think about that should get you headed in the right direction:
- Lots of “For Sale” signs in the neighborhood. In a fast moving sellers market, it is not uncommon to see lots of yards signs in a neighborhood. If this is the case, they should say “sale pending”, or “under contract”. Homeowners are attempting to take advantage of the appreciation and pocket some spare change. In a normal market, however, when you see lots of choices of homes for sale, let this be a big warning to you, they are leaving for a reason. Get a good google search of the neighborhood and community, maybe find a neighborhood Facebook page to see if any of the current residents are posting about the concerns.
- Neighborhood is not very tidy. Is the grass mowed, is there an old boat in the yard? When you do a drive out of the neighborhood, are the yards kept up or are they looking like something from a bad movie? It is OK to see an extra car or a bike, just not a fridge or a rusted washing machine. If the grass is taller than the old lawn mower, pass on it.
- Suspicious looking repairs. When you are inside the home and notice some repairs that look a little unusual, it is time to do a little inspecting. Was the kitchen remodeled? Did the sellers use a reputable company? If not, the wiring and the plumbing may have been done by the homeowner, and code issues could be a problem. Who wants to plug in the Margarita machine on the day you move in and cause a spark that puts the house up in flames. Now, you would need the margarita watching your new house burn down. Do you smell something? Maybe the plumbing behind the walls wasn’t done properly and there is a small leak. Yuck.
- Fun Rugs. Wow, those rugs sure look great, I wonder if the owners would consider selling them? You better look under them, there may be an old pet stain, or damaged wood or even carpet. That is really frustrating to move in after they have removed the rugs, only to find Fido ate the cat there several years ago.
- A strong odor (good or bad). Do you smell something? Maybe the plumbing behind the walls wasn’t done properly and there is a small leak. Yuck. When you get a whiff of something that is not roses, do some research. Is it cigarettes, cat urine, or water caused mold? If it is strong, you may have a tough time getting rid of it without tearing the house apart.
- Can I add that extra bedroom out back? If you see that the neighbor has added that new master bedroom and it doesn’t match the rest of the house, you better hit the bricks on this one too. Having a proper HOA to monitor the additions can be a good thing. The last thing you want to find out is you can’t legally add one to your home, or that the neighbor did it by themselves and boy can you tell it.
We want to help you find a great home in a great neighborhood! Don’t be a gambler, we will let you know when to RUN!