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Three Colossal Tips for First Time Home Buyers.

Buying your first home or just your new home can become very difficult in today's confusing online world. Every buyer feels the need to constantly search online and this behavior can cause you to miss the house that could be perfect for you. We, as people, like pictures that look good, it's our nature, pretty house, nice pool, etc. When in reality we need to focus on things that we need in a house and not things that make it look great on a computer screen. Pictures deceive the amount of space that is actually in a home and bad pictures and can turn a buyer off completely. Here are three things that can help you find the right home for you and your needs.

  1. The first one that you can avoid are homes in “as-is” condition. You can either avoid them or temper your expectations completely. These types of homes can immediately turn you off as a buyer. The paint could be a horrible color, there could be dirty or beat up flooring, many different factors can turn off, especially a first time buyer. Understand that you may save some money on these properties in the long run, but there will be work do after you close. So if you aren’t willing put in some sweat equity on these, avoid wanting to see these listings. For some people who want the work or investors, this is their sweet spot.

  2. Find an agent that works with you and understands what you want. The biggest mistake you can make as a buyer is go at it alone and find an agent later. So many people hire their family members who are an agent. While that may work for some, it largely can be a big mistake and can potentially shatter a relationship within your family. Find someone who can be honest with you. Find someone who asks you what you want. Find someone who will answer the phone when you call (within reason, I typically answer my phone between 8AM-7PM during the day, unless there is an emergency that needs to be handled). Good buyer agents will push you in a direction after a few showings because they will figure out your taste and what you want in a home. There is no reason you should ever look at more than 12 properties if you are working with the right agent. I will give my buyers three homes that they pick and I will pick three. After that we will have a serious conversation about what is needed and what is wanted and I will traditionally pick the last four. If we have to go over that, we need to reevaluate what we are looking at. Find an agent that helps you, not the one who just just opens doors for you while you do all the searching. It will save your both time. This agent should also get you set up with finding financing as well. Most agents have several relationships with good and experienced mortgage agents. Make sure they have an existing relationship with an experienced mortgage broker.

  3. Inspections. Never skip these. Always do your homework and get an inspection done. As good as it may look to the eye, there could be serious issues with the home. Foundations, Roofs, HVAC systems are major issues that most of us don’t look at everyday. Get a professional recommendation. A good realtor will give you a name of someone that does home inspections and they will let you know what needs work and what doesn’t.

These tips can make the home buying process easier and much less stressful. Find the right agent, have them show you the right homes, and do your homework on these homes. It’s simple really, but some make it so hard. If you need help finding your first home, I would be glad to help in any way. You can always call me at 904-574-1958 or email at matthew.miller@era.com

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Jacksonville, Florida 32217
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