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How to prepare to buy a home in Phoenix

23 Feb 2016 1

Through the years of working with many types of people, it’s evident there are a lot of misnomers about the home buying process. First time home buyers are often misled from beliefs and experiences they had or saw many years ago. The fact of the matter is times have changed. The process of buying a property is vastly different now than it was 20 or 15 years ago – even 5 years ago.

As First time home buyers of the Millennial generation are one of the largest demographics purchasing in Arizona (and still growing). So where do you start to buying a home. Thanks to technology and the increasing speed of daily life, you want instant gratification these days. Let it be said right now: BUYING A HOME TAKES PATIENCE. Take note on what you need to do NOW to streamline your ownership dreams in the future. If you follow along and take my advice, you can make this process a breeze.

Talk to a Phoenix mortgage broker

It’s all too common to put the “cart before the horse”. It’s only natural to want to focus on the fun part of buying (searching through all the homes for sale) before making sure you can afford it. Don’t get me wrong, it’s ok and normal to start browsing homes for sale, but if you are serious about buying property within the next 12 months, it’s best to get your ducks in a row NOW. If you are not in the habit of monitoring your credit regularly, you might be surprised to see what’s in your credit report. Catching any issues well in advance and having a lender review your personal financial situation is key to being able to pull the trigger when the time comes.

Don’t go out and look at properties when you are not qualified and ready to pull the trigger. You will inevitably fall in love with a home and without your ducks in a row you won’t be able to make a solid offer. Any home seller will not review an offer from a potential buyer that does not include a pre-qualification from a reputable lender.
A good lender can turn out a pre-qualification relatively quickly, however only if you have absolutely no issues with credit, supplying documentation for taxes, paystubs etc. Those couple of days can be just enough time for someone else to swoop in and buy that highly desirable property you loved.Mortgage Phoenix


Come up with a priority list for your new Phoenix home

Take a few moments and come up with a list of priorities and wants for your new abode. This should include Location, Bedrooms, features, yard space, pool, garage, levels, school system, etc. Arrange starting with the absolute most important item and end with items that would be nice, but would not be deal breakers. The key to this exercise is NO TIES ALLOWED. Your list should look something like this.
The most important aspects of my new home are:

1) Be in the Arcadia neighborhood
2) Have 3 bedrooms
3) Have a large yard
4) Has no pool
5) Has Vaulted ceilings
6) Has a 3 car garage
7) Is on a cul de sac
8) Is move-in ready
9) Has a walk in closet in the master
10) Has stainless steel appliances
11) Has a kitchen island

This exercise allows you to really stop and think about importance of what you really want. Is the functionality of the house more important and the location is open? Or do you want to be in an awesome location, even if you have to sacrifice elsewhere inside. If you are buying with a spouse, have them do the same exercise separately and compare your results after. While you may think in your head “I know exactly what I want already” by getting it down in a prioritized list, you’ll soon understand in big scheme of things what it really is you are after. A clear direction helps yourself, your lender and your agent work towards a common goal of getting you in to your perfect home.

Be Ready to Move

Currently in Phoenix, the average days on market before sold is right around 60 days. In many neighborhoods, including central Phoenix and Arcadia areas, that average is much closer to 30 days, with many properties being sold in a day or two. To get ahold of one of the quick moving highly desirable properties, you need to be ready to pounce at a moment’s notice.

If you are in a lease, know when your lease expires. If you are on a month to month lease, you will still most likely need to give a 30 day notice to your landlord. If you are in a lease and want to break it, it still might be worth it for the right property, but know what fines you must pay for terminating the lease early. Make sure the kids can maintain the same schools if required. Many districts have open enrollment but restrictions vary. Think about what other factors might affect your personal situation before you decide to pull the trigger.

Find a trusted partner

There are a lot of moving parts to buying property. It’s a learning curve and since you don’t do it every day, chances are when you go to buy your second or third home you will need to a refresher. Fortunately for buyers, working with a seasoned and licensed Arizona agent on your side will make the process a whole lot simpler. Remember, you pay nothing to work with a qualified buyer’s agent, so ask lots of questions, take the advice and allow their experience and professional connections to work in your favor – save time, save money and reach your goals efficiently.

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