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Trulia, Other/Just Looking in San Francisco, CA

What are some surprises that first-time buyers encounter when purchasing a home?

Asked by Trulia, San Francisco, CA Thu Mar 1, 2012

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Irina Karan’s answer
The main problem that first time home buyers encounter is their being uninformed.
Asking lots of questions is the cure for that.
As real estate pros, it is our job to educate the buyers upfront, way before they make an offer, on what the buyers will go through during their purchase - step by step, going over the costs involved along the way. It's great to have the buyers budget for move-in costs, as well as the minor repairs and house keeping needs that will come up with the purchase. Being prepared makes the purchase process easy and smooth.

The second surprise to avoid is the property issues - including the work done without permits, termites and hurricaane preparedness (if applicable). If the buyers' budget allows for the "cure" of these issues, then the purchase is ok. If not, the buyers should avoid these sort of "surprises" and walk away.

The third issue or surprise can come up if the buyers don't adhere to the dates in the contract. Time is of the essence, and extensions, if needed, should be filed timely - the escrow money is on the line.

The fourth surprise could be avoided by picking a good mortgage professional. Pre-approval usually helps - not to be confused with the pre-qualificaton. To make sure that the price agreed upon is correct, and the house will appraise, the comparable sales review needs to be done prior to making an offer.

The fifth surprise to eliminate is related to short sales and foreclosures.
There is nothing "short" about a short sale and the lender might counter higher, and foreclosures require addendum that takes away the contract rights of the buyers.

Irina Karan
Beachfront Realty, Inc.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Apr 11, 2012
Often times appraisals come in higher or lower than offers and can alter the prices you ultimately pay. In order to prevent any unpleasant shocks make sure this is in your contingency plans, and always have a lending professional you trust. Also, the inspection process can be unpredictable, but it is such a wonderful step, enjoy the ride! Best of luck!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Apr 10, 2012
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