Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Home Buyer Tips: When should I start looking at homes?

The "when" I speak of here is not about the timing of the real estate market.  In a perfect world, one would only buy when prices are at their lowest point.  In a perfect world sellers would only sell when prices are at their highest mark.  But, the world of real estate is not perfect in that way.

The timing I speak of here is once a decision has been made to buy a Florida home.

To look too early is a waste of time.  Selling a home is disruptive to ones lifestyle.  Sellers will accommodate motivated buyers.

Still there is nothing wrong with doing some of the preparatory tasks like preliminary searches on the Internet.  And driving through neighborhoods and areas of potential interest.  And looking at past sales records to gain an idea of where the market has been lately. And, most importantly, getting the pre-approval in place as well as the closing funds secured.

So when should one start looking for homes?  I recommend contacting a local real estate agent three to six months in advance to set up a multiple listing search to receive new listings that meet your desires and budget.  Most closings take about 30 to 45 days in Florida.  (This takes into account the inspections, appraisal, etc.) Of course there is some variation based on whether financing is sought or if it is a cash transaction.

Now working backwards...how long will it take to find "the house?"   The exact time will depend on the availability of potential suitable properties.

If a buyer has very narrowly defined requirements the time will likely be longer.  If the property sought is more common, then it may only take a couple of weekends to find it.

If you are thinking about buying a home in Brevard County, Florida, please give me a call to discuss time lines, locations, prices and putting a personalized plan in place.