Trulia San D…, Home Buyer in San Diego, CA

Who has a more difficult task ahead of them in San Diego's current market: a first-time buyer or a move-up buyer?

Asked by Trulia San Diego, San Diego, CA Thu May 16, 2013

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I have to go with @Hector and this market it is all about the agent, IMHO. I have both first time home buyers and move up buyers who have literally been shopping for over a year. Try as I might (being as diplomatic as humanly possibly) they continue to keep doing the same thing with the same agent.... Now, many of those "preapprovals" are priced out of the market by increase in sales price and/or increase in rate.

Conversely, when I have clients working with a experienced agent...and, with realistic expectations....even in this market they are often in contract with a few weeks. And, it does not matter what loan product we are using. A strong offer, with a strong agent and a reputable lender will get the mission accomplished every time.

All my best,

NMLS 279125
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jul 25, 2013
First-time buyer due to the lack of entry-level inventory.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jul 25, 2013
A better question to ask is "do the benefits of purchasing a new home in 2013 outweigh the financing obstacles?"

From an investment perspective the answer is an absolute YES. The housing market is going to have a furious upswing in pricing and a profitable ride for quite some time. Historically speaking, it’s likely over the next 10-15 years minimally. With interest rates in the 3-4% range holding for (anyone's guess?), this is "the" opportune time to buy buy buy!

From a financing perspective, or limited cash for a down payment, there are loan programs out there with 3% down (conventional financing included!) with or without additional monthly premiums.

Always do the math … if it makes sense, do it! If you qualify now, chances are (with exception) waiting for an improved scenario will likely not calculate to a balance sheet profit.

Bill Stuart, Broker/Officer, Realtor®, Certified Short Sale Resource, CNE®
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun May 19, 2013
Hello San Diego,

This could easily be answered with the following: "it depends". However, I realize you are looking for a little more substance, so here are some of my thoughts:

There is a perception that a first time home buyer has little cash to put down, and while this may be the case in some situations, it is not always true. Speaking from experience, I have had "first time" home buyers pay all cash for homes up to 800K. Given this situation, I'd say that makes for buying a home a lot easier than a "move up" buyer, who has to deal with selling their property and writing up an offer that is contingent upon the sale of their existing home

In fact, since your question addresses the "current market", I'm going to go with a move up buyer, since I will assume they have to write up a "contingent offer." In this environment, with places getting up to 50 offers or more, there is no way they will take a contingent offer. However, they will not exclude someone simply because they are a first time home buyer (nor would they likely even know that.)

So, as Regis would prompt me to say.....Yes, this is my final answer. Of course, there are some many variables to this, that one could easily argue the other is true depending on the facts of the case (ie, a move up buyer who is simply moving up but doesn't have to sell their current place would be in a much better position than a first time home buyer).

I could go on and on, but it's time to find my client's (both move up and first timer's) some properties.


Chad Basinger, REALTOR®, CPA, CFP®
Web Reference:
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat May 18, 2013
I believe first time buyers have the more difficult task -if only because they usually have less cash available. If a seller is selling their home and moving up, chances are they either have equity or the financial means to do so.

Indeed, first time buyers who often rely heavily on the FHA or VA loan programs in San Diego are facing a tough hurdle right now!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri May 17, 2013
Where do these generic questions come from? There is no good answer to this question, really!

A well placed first time home buyer, with a great job, great credit, and good down payment = Super
no problems there. If a move up buyer has a property that is easy to sell, because it is in demand in the
area, well maintained and well priced and has equity = No problem either.

Anyone else it does not matter where they buy or what they will need the expertise and guidance of a good Realtor, to find them the right property for THEM.

Sincerely yours,
Edith YourRealtor4Life & Chicago and Northern Illinois Expert

Working always in the very BEST interest of her clients, Buyers, Sellers and Investors alike....
And always with a SMILE 
Covering for @Properties the city of Chicago, all N and NW suburbs, the fine homes on the
North Shore, and many of the W and SW suburbs, and with her trusted Partner Agents all of
the US and worldwide properties. Edith speaks French, German, some Spanish and other.....
@Properties Brokerage, 30 Green Bay Road, Winnetka, Illinois 60093
Check out my website at htttp://
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri May 17, 2013
Before I even saw the other responses, my thought was exactly Hector's first sentence - It depends on the agent. I would add that it also depends upon the agent across the table. I find that the real deal breakers are the agents involved more so than anything else. Whereas two good agents working collaboratively to represent their clients and the contract are deal makers.

Example - I recently had a VA buyer submit an offer for $3000 over asking price. The seller took a lower offer from an investor because they felt the house wouldn't appraise at the price we offered. OK.

Why not try out the higher VA offer first? if it doesn't appraise, the investor will still be there. If it does appraise, the seller just made $10-15k more on their sale. QUESTION -Where does the seller get the idea that our offer wouldn't appraise? ANSWER - Their agent....who helped them with the list price in the first place. I tried every angle I could to demonstrate that my buyers were legit and would close, and the seller's agent's biases shut us down. And the seller's were military as well and purchased the house with a VA loan...go figure. One would hope that fellow veterans would at least give each other a helping hand or more consideration.

So really, the more difficult task ahead is for the buyer who falls in love with a home that is listed by a difficult and/or close minded agent. Corrupt agents is a whole other story....

On the move up buyer, a) they don't have to buy b) it is more of a logistics issue than it is a being shut out issue, at least in the markets I am working.

DRE 01775528
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu May 16, 2013
I say it depends on the agent. I'd rather work with a great REALTOR that has a first time buyer, than a bad agent with a move up buyer. As long as the buyers are realistic, and determined they will buy.

Hector Gastelum
REALTOR #01382940
Realty Executives Dillon
efax 619-270-2516
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu May 16, 2013
Probably 1st time if Move up is at higher price- ie above investor target
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu May 16, 2013
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