Look Before You Leap Into Southwest Florida Real Estate

Are You Ready to Buy That Second Home, Vacation Home or Condominium?

Have you planned ahead?

Have you had a discussion with your family about the type of home that best suits everyone’s needs? Have you made a conscious decision about whether you want a single family home or a condominium? Whether you will need a mortgage or if you are already pre-approved? Have you discussed insurance costs, taxes and maintenance costs and/or a property management? If you answered yes to all of the above you are ready to buy. If you answered no to any of the above, step back, take a deep breath and think a little more about what you want and can afford to do.

Looking without a plan will put you at a disadvantage.

If you start looking without having a mortgage pre-approval or understanding insurance costs and taxes you are not yet ready to buy and may risk losing out on that “just right” property while you educate yourself on these costs. Sellers want to sell and want buyers who are ready, willing and able to buy now.

Trust your buyer’s agent.

It’s important to have a buyer’s agent/realtor whom you can trust. They are the experts and professionals who are looking out for your interests, not the seller’s. While it’s natural to want reassurance for such a big decision, your neighbors or friends who will happily share their opinions are not experts. Too many cooks spoil the broth and too many opinions from well meaning people will make it much harder to make a decision. Focus on your wants and needs and the wants and needs of the people who will actually live in the home.

No house is ever perfect.

Have you ever talked with someone who had a home custom built just for them? Would they do it the same way if they were to build again? Chances are they would want to make some changes. So, be realistic with your expectations. Maybe it’s in the right location but the yard is a little smaller than your dream home. Is it close to the amenities you want and have other aspects that will impact your family? Maybe it has the open floor plan and kitchen that you want but the carpets and colors aren’t perfect. Focus on things that are most important to you and those who will live there. Let the minor imperfections go. New carpet and fresh paint are an easy fix.

Negotiations are stressful.

Negotiation is definitely a part of the real estate process, but trying to “win” by leading with an extra-low offer or refusing to budge on a reasonable counter offer may cost you the home you love. Discuss your strategy with your buyer’s agent before you make the offer.

Mike Badenoch is an exclusive buyer agent and broker associate with Buyer’s Choice Realty Group, Inc., Sanibel, Florida. Buyer’s Choice Realty Group, Inc. is an exclusive buyer agency representing only real estate buyers on Sanibel and Captiva Islands, Fort Myers and Cape Coral, Florida. Feel free to call Mike at 239-292-1233 with any questions you may have or visit his web site at www.yourexclusivebuyeragent.com.

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