Home Buying in Atlanta>Question Details

Jon, Home Buyer in Atlanta, GA

Is it bad to go to an open house when I'm not buying within the next year?

Asked by Jon, Atlanta, GA Tue Sep 9, 2008

I'd like to eventually buy a place, but I doubt I'll be in a position to within the next year. Would it be a bad thing to be occasionally dropping in on open houses that interest me this early in the "looking process" to start establishing some idea of what can be had for how much money around here?

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Definitely not..............

Being an informaed buyer means collecting as much information as you can about the market in which you are going to take part in........there's no room for guilt here.

Be up front and make this declaration to the agent doing the open house. I'm sure they will provide the same level of information and enthusiasm.

Great to see someone id planning for the future...........

Good luck,
The "Eckler Team"
1 vote Thank Flag Link Tue Sep 9, 2008
I also think it is a good idea to see what's out there. This will help you in deciding what you really want when the time is right. As an agent, I wouldn't mind someone attending my open house even if they aren't looking to buy, they may mention it to a friend who is, go for it!
1 vote Thank Flag Link Tue Sep 9, 2008
There is nothing wrong with it whatsoever. Part of buying a home is to become educated in what is out in the market and what different areas of Atlanta consist of. Just be straight up with the person who is conducting the open house that you will not be in the market for a while and you doing research on the area. They will be fine with that.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Tue Sep 9, 2008
Great advice from two of the best and the brightest here at Trulia Voices - big ups to my KW brethren Joshua and Deryk.

Jon - in addition to Open Houses, get out to some of the Neighborhood Home tours to see how poeple live, how they decorate and to get to know the neighbors in the neighborhoods that interest you. Go to neighborhood association meetings - many neighborhoods, especially Intown, hold monthly gatherings where politicians, real estate developers the local police officers who work the beats and the active, caring people who live in the area gather to make progress and deal with things that needs to be dealt with.

For instance, the South Atlantans for Neighborhood Development hold their tour of Ormewood Park/EATL area homes on 10/18-19. Come to the super cool East Atlanta Strut on 9/20. See some beautiful older homes on the Grant Park tour on 9/27-28.(see web reference)

Otherwise, Joshua and Deryk are right - get your money lined up and know your purchasing power.

One more thing - you'll meet hundreds of real estate agents while attending Open Houses. Just remember the good ones - give them permission to follow up with you - interview a short list and you'll have one terrific agent on your side when the time to purchase actually comes.

Get your real estate on.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Tue Sep 9, 2008
Checking out open houses here and there is a great way to get an idea of the type and style of home you're attracted to. Also, when you look you can see the difference in neighborhoods and where you could see yourself living. Good luck in your search!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Dec 28, 2010
Jon, not at all. Look, look, look!! If time permits. You can ride around or walk and look at what you have an interest in. You get a chance to see the area during the day and observe the area over a time period at night. It will give you the visual of what some people have done with the properties in similiar price points. This will also get rid of false expectations as a buyer depending on the price range and area that you are doing your viewings in. You have a year but it might be less when you get motived to take the jump towards looking to actually purchase. Look at the renovations done, upgrades, lack there of, yard work, basement finishes,etc.. It is knowones time but your own. The purchase of a property is a special one be it investment or live in purchase. The bottom line is that you will be a little better informed and can truely fine tune what it is you want when you are ready to buy and get the best available property on the market for you when you do. Sounds good to me. Just remember some properties could be a waste of time if you want the owner's suite on the main or upstairs and the property is not that. You may have other particulars that might be better assisted with the ad of a Broker to let you know which open house properties to really look at so as not to be properties that you would not be interested in buying when you are ready. Happy viewings!!!
Web Reference: http://www.BrianSellsGA.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Sep 18, 2008
Jon: Absolutey, you should go to any Open House you want. This is an excellent way to research and learn about neighborhoods and market conditions. You are very smart to be thinking ahead and gathering the data you need in order to make a well informed and smart buy when you are ready. You might mention to the agent what your plans are and your timeframe for buying. My motto is, I work on your schedule not mine so most agents will appreciate the information and be more than happy to help you wth any information you need. My best to you.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Sep 9, 2008
Go for it!!!! This is a perfect opportunity to see what is out there right now for the money. Just be honest to the agent holding the Open House so that they can give the seller "true" feedback.. If the home owner is holding the open house than you might want to limit the conversation about the actual time frame. But I think this is a great start for you! :) Valerie Corpora-Ellis 770-262-8480
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Sep 9, 2008

Everyone is welcome at open houses, that is why they are "open"! Go satisfy your curiousity, define your wants and needs in a home...and use them as further motivation to get into your first place.

Be honest with the agents at the homes that you are not in the market at the moment, but also ask them lots of questions! It may also be a way to identify a potential agent that knows the market in which you are looking to buy. To build on Lee's advice, get thier cards and stay in touch with them over the course of the year.

Additionally, if you do find an agent you like you can ask them to set up a "hot sheet" of new listings that meet your potential criteria via e-mail.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Sep 9, 2008

Go see 'em! Especially open houses. In fact, you might even contact a good Realtor now. A lot of the buying process comes down to strategy and market knowledge. With a year under your belt looking you'll have a good grasp of the market and what you can get for your money without getting sellers excited about a "showing."

The only downside of open houses is that you tend to spend time looking at homes that don't match your criteria. A good Realtor can send you a list that matches your criteria more specifically.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Sep 9, 2008
Joshua Jarvis, Real Estate Pro in Duluth, GA
Not at all Jon...It can give you a good sense of where prices are going over time, what the neighborhood is like and of course it will expose you to different style of homes, various levels of upgrades/updates and owner maintenance. All of this will help you in the long run when you make a decision to buy. To find open houses in your area you might try http://www.ajchomefinder.com, georgiaopenhouses.com and realtor.com. Now is also a good time to check with a lender or two and see what you can qualify for and what you can do to improve your chances of getting good financing for the home you want. Good luck with your search.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Sep 9, 2008
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