Part 1 of 3 “F.A.Q.” Blog Series – Homebuyers FAQ
Can I buy a new house while I still own another house?
This is going to depend on your personal situation. A good lender will be able to tell you what you can qualify for with your existing loan in place. In most situations, you can make an offer on a new home that is contingent upon your existing house being sold. If you plan to do this, in good faith you should list your home as soon as you are serious about purchasing a new one, or have made an offer on a new home.
A seller understandably does not want to sit in escrow for months on end waiting for you to sell your house, when there are other buyers who could be closing much sooner. People do make contingent offers all the time, so yes it’s perfectly doable.
Do understand however there are two types of contingent offers:
- Purchase of new property is contingent upon receiving a contract on your current home, and your current home closing before you may close on the new property.
- You are already under contract to sell your property with a closing date set. Your contingency states you must close before you may purchase the new property.
Ultimately, when an offer is contingent upon the closing of your current property, your current property must sell first either way. The difference comes whether or not you do NOT already have a contract on your house, or you DO have a contact on your house. In the seller’s best interests, it’s not as common to accept a contingent offer where the home you must sell has not been placed under contract yet.
If you have the ability to purchase a new home before closing on your current home, it may be in your best interest to do so for a few reasons:
- Your offer on the new home will not be contingent, thus it will be a “stronger” offer.
- You will not have to keep your home in top shape while you sell and try to pack at the same time. Once you move out, have it professionally cleaned and it’s ready to go
Should I get pre-qualified before starting a home search?
Generally speaking, absolutely. You should get prequalified before you get serious about your home search. When you get qualified for a loan you then have the ability to see exactly how much you can get financed and what price home that will buy you. It can be very frustrating to buyers when they believe they can afford a $400,000 home, but only get approved for a $250,000 home! If you’ve already started looking at $400,000 homes, the expectations are now very high after seeing what $400,000 home can get you but you do not have the budget to get those same qualities in a $250,000 home.
Additionally, most Realtors are going to request you to talk with a lender before taking you out to see homes. Think about it, if you can’t qualify for what you are looking at, or can’t qualify for a loan AT ALL, you are just wasting your time, and your agent’s time. By getting qualified, you know what you can afford, what those payments would look like and can be realistic about your home search. If you’d like to be put in touch with a good local lender with a proven track record, just ask.
What the deal with termites in Arizona?
There’s a famous adage around here, “There are two types of homes in Arizona, those with termites and those that will get termites”. For many people in other parts of the country hearing about termites it can be startling. However, termites in Arizona are very common and every house will have them at some point.
Professionals and industry pros are very aware of termites in Arizona, and precautions are always taken in order to identify and correct the issue. Many homeowners participate in a regular treatment plan in order to prevent or kill any issues at the first signs of termites. In reality there is no structural integrity issues in most termite situations unless they have completely infested a house for years on end. It’s a rare situation to let it get to this point since most Phoenix homeowners are aware.
Your typical home inspection will most likely turn up evidence of termites, or show signs of past treatment of termites. There is absolutely no need to be alarmed, just be informed. A simple treatment should rid the property of termites 95% of the time. The treatment usually last for about 3-5 years and costs somewhere between $400 to $500. If you wish to have a more thorough inspection companies are available to identify all termite affected areas with thermal imaging technology.
For those of you imagining a large circus tent over your house for treatment – that’s not how it’s done unless an extreme case. A termite company will simply inject insecticide into the soil around the perimeter of the property. Most termites live underground and have to go back into the ground for water where the insecticide is waiting for them.
A termite inspections is highly suggested for the purchase of all property during your inspection period. On some loans, obtaining a termite inspection will be required. The cost of inspection is marginal compared to the treatment and peace of mind of a pest free home.
Have any looming questions? Get in touch to get your Real Estate questions answered!
Happy House Hunting!