8 Ways to Land Your Dream Home
The real estate market is as hot as it’s been in nearly two decades. This presents a lot of opportunities, but also some new challenges to landing your dream home. These 8 tips below will help you prepare to land your dream home when the time is right.
1. Create a buying philosophy – In order to truly land your dream home, you need to first know what that looks like. This can be done by creating a buying philosophy before you start looking at homes.
Your buying philosophy will help steer you towards the homes that will keep you happy for years. And since buying a home can be an emotional experience, it will help you identify homes that seem right in the moment, but probably aren’t the best fit for you.
When creating your buying philosophy, figure out which features and characteristics are at the top of your list are ‘must haves’ in your dream home. You’ll most likely already know some features you’re looking for like bedrooms, yard, walk-in closet, etc., but you should include more than just features in your buying philosophy.
For example, is it important to be close to schools, parks, or shopping centers? Do you want an open floorplan or sectioned-off rooms? Do you care if the home needs a little work or does it need to be turnkey?
Once you answer these questions and identify your 2-4 most important ‘must haves’, you can use this to help you find your dream home.
PRO TIP: Do everything you can to keep your ’must-haves’ to 4 or fewer features or characteristics. Everything else should be considered a ‘nice to have’.
2. Get notified of listings before anyone else – Due to inventory shortages, we are very much in a ‘seller’s market’ right now. This means many of the best homes have multiple offers within 48 hours of hitting the market and are in escrow within days.
If you’re just browsing homes every day on your own, you will be at a major disadvantage.
Popular home search sites like Zillow and Redfin allow you to set up listing alerts, but they don’t always have the most accurate and up-to-date information.
If you want up-to-the-minute updates, we can set you up with listing alerts so you get notified by email or push notifications via our app as soon as new listings hit the Multiple Listing Service (MLS).
To set up your listing alerts, fill out our 2-minute questionnaire so we can send you only the listings that meet your price range, search area, and criteria.
BONUS: The only thing better than knowing about listings as soon as they hit the MLS, is knowing about them before they hit the MLS. Since The Wright Team has 30+ top agents on our team, we share our upcoming listings with our team and their clients before they hit the MLS. If we have a listing that is about to hit the MLS that would be perfect for you, you will get a priority private showing.
3. Only work with the best – Almost everyone has a friend or family member (or friend of a friend) who is a real estate agent or lender. As tempting as it is to use them when you want to buy and sell, it could end up costing you your dream home.
Today’s market is extremely competitive and only the best agents are navigating it properly with their clients to help them stand out when placing offers against dozens of other offers on the same home.
More than ever, your agent must know how to present and communicate a clean offer to the sellers in a timely manner to give you the best chance to win.
Additionally, having a rapport with the listing agent can often help buyers get their offers accepted.
One of the benefits of being the top-selling team at the #1 selling single-office in all of Orange County is that we carry a pretty strong reputation. When listing agents work with an agent from The Wright Team, they know that they’re working with professionals on the other end and it helps us win more deals for our clients.
TAKE ACTION: If you’d like to schedule up a 60-minute Buyer’s Consultation so we can show you all the things we do to help our buyers stand out, click this link, or text us at 949-395-8559 to set it up today.
4. Get pre-approved (not just pre-qualified) – If you’ll need a loan to purchase your home, you’ll want to get pre-approved (not just pre-qualified) before you move from a looky-loo to a serious buyer.
The difference is slight but important. In simple terms, getting pre-qualified means the lender thinks they will be able to loan you a certain amount, based on the information you’ve provided them.
Getting pre-approved means they can guarantee they’ll be able to loan you the pre-approved amount.
As we mentioned earlier, we are in a seller’s market and any uncertainty with your offer could cause you to lose out to a similar (or a worse) offer. When a seller has multiple hot offers presented at the same time, they will often prioritize the offers with the least amount of uncertain variables.
5. Make an offer that is in line with your love for the home – We’ve yet to work with a buyer who wants to overpay for a home, regardless of how much they love it. But when it comes to your dream home, it may be worth it.
Instead of trying to figure out what is the least amount that you can pay for the home and still get it, you should decide how much the home is worth to you. As long as you stick to this philosophy, then it’s impossible to overpay.
Before you present an offer to the seller, ask yourself “On a scale of 1-10, how much do I love this home?”. If the answer is “10”, then you had better be sure you write a “10” offer, even if it means you could have gotten the home for less.
Losing your dream home over a few thousand dollars is far more painful than ‘overpaying’ by that same amount.
6. Keep your offer clean – While the price is often the headline for an offer, there are several other ways to make an offer great.
Consider all the other things that will make your offer more attractive to a seller and include as many of them as possible, provided you’re able to do so. Here is a shortlist of the many ways you can present a clean offer:
- Let the seller choose the escrow period length
- Remove contingencies
- Don’t include personal property or repair requests
Also, how you present the offer can be as important as what’s in the offer. Make sure your offer is complete, clear, and easy to understand. It’s also a good idea to include a cover letter that summarizes the main points of the offer.
When you work with The Wright Team we handle all of this but don’t be shy about asking your agent to show you the entire offer being sent so you can be confident your offer is as clean and complete as possible.
7. Don’t make any big purchases until escrow closes – Once you enter escrow on your new home, your finances will be scrutinized in order to fund your new loan. One of the easiest ways to complicate (or in some cases, ruin) your loan is by making large purchases during your escrow.
As tempting as it may be to get a new car or purchase furniture for your new home, it can come with some pretty big risks. Be sure to talk with your real estate agent and lender before making any big purchases from the time you get pre-approved until your escrow closes.
8. Think about your future – It’s important to think about how your life will change during the years you expect to be in your new home.
For example, if you expect to have kids in the years after you purchase, you will want to consider things like whether or not you will need extra bedrooms and if you like the schools in that district. Or perhaps you intend to retire in this home, you might want to consider purchasing a single-story home with an attached garage.
Other scenarios may include working from home and needing a home office, kids moving out of (or back into) the home, an older generation moving in with you, etc.
If you only intend to be in this home for a few years, this may not be as important. But if this is your forever home, make sure you’re giving yourself enough flexibility to stay in it forever.
Follow these 8 secrets and you’ll be well on your way to landing your dream home.
The Wright Team is a team with 30+ professional real estate agents and more than 500 years of combined experience. We are the top-selling team at the #1 selling single-office in all of Orange County. We would love the opportunity to help you find your next dream home. Whether you’re 5 days away from buying, 5 months away from buying, or 5 years away from buying, it’s never too early to start planning with a real estate professional.
If you’d like to set up a 60-minute Buyer’s Consultation so we can show you all the things we do to help our buyers stand out, click this link, or text us at 949.395.8559 to set it up today.