You’re one to avoid impulsive purchases or those that are emotionally driven. Still, it’s expected that some of life’s larger purchases–like buying a a new Chicago home–will carry some emotional weight, though you can avoid letting it sabotage your search by remembering the following five tips.
1. At some point, you have to stop seeking the better deal. You’ve watched the market bounce up and down for a while, but remember that you can’t predict the future and there is no guarantee that prices will continue to fall or that mortgage rates will continue to improve. Don’t deceive yourself into believing that there will always be something better around the next bend.
2. Still your romantic mind–in real estate, there is no love at first sight. “The process” is something that cannot be overvalued when buying a home. Doing your due diligence here ensures that key conditions are not dismissed, you don’t overpay in your rush to seal the deal and you won’t be left with buyer’s remorse (of the worst kind). Take your time, look at all your options and choose deliberately and wisely.
3. The perfect property (which may not actually exist) is still worth a fair price, so don’t extend an inflated offer when you find “the one.” When you feel emotionally attached to an idyllic property, ask yourself how it will serve you in all respects: current needs, potential future needs, resale potential, etc. Consider your full investment and take care to not overextend yourself financially.
4. Don’t be deceived by foreclosures or short sales–they may not be the deal you think they are. Too many buyers like to operate independently, but like it or not, no one knows the land like a Chicago real estate agent. They’ll help you determine whether a foreclosure or short sale is worth your investment by investigating things like price history, feature set and current market trends in Chicago neighborhoods.
5. Negotiate your purchase, but don’t insult the seller by naively lowballing their property. Keep your expectations realistic and your offer fair. This way, you avoid losing the property by having your offer rejected or unnecessarily lengthening the process and annoying the seller. And cash buyers–don’t think you can lowball just because you’re buying outright.
At the end of the day, just stay practical and play smart. Ask questions, explore the market, don’t rush your purchase and make no assumptions about a property or a seller. Your dream home is out there, you may just have to see it differently at first.