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Top 2 Ways to Buy Your First Home with Less Work and Less Money

Top 2 Ways to Buy Your First Home with Less Work and Less Money

Hi!

When buying your first home in Arlington – or anywhere – there are some fundamental things to put into place to help you get the best home possible for you with the least effort on your part and for the smallest amount of bucks out of your pocket. Here goes!

1. Have a plan. The key components of this are timing, money and who.

-When do you want to buy, and what is this based on? Can there be flexibility in the timing? Flexibility is one of the keys to having more negotiating power when making an offer.

-Where is the money for the purchase coming from? If a loan, get a referral from your agent. They know the best ones. Service to get you to closing, not just a great rate, is important. You need to close on the house in the time you have agreed to in your contract with the seller, so you are not in default. When you say you will buy it on a certain date, the lender needs to make sure all flows well and you can close on that date, with certainty!

A Top Notch Buyer Representative saves you time and money.

A Top Notch Buyer Representative saves you time and money.

-Who is going to lead you to success? Choosing a Buyer Representative is important. A study showed that buyers consider buying a house for an average of 13 months before they select a Realtor. And then guess how long they take to select a Buyer Representative? Only 1 week. And it’s such an important decision to make. What this leads the experts to believe is that, for the most part, not a lot of thought is put by buyers into selecting a great agent, and one that will work well with a buyer’s needs and personality. Some buyers choose to work with the first agent that they meet in public. It’s highly recommended to choose one wisely.

2. Reduce your time spent on searching and buying. Time is money – imagine considering to buy a house and then the interest rates increase to a point that you cannot buy the house you want? Wouldn’t that be a bad thing?

The best time reduction technique or choice is to get an agent to represent you 6 months to a year out from when you want to buy. Let them do the work!

I hear every week from buyers, when I am out in the field working, that they are just checking things out and online, figuring out what they want to buy and where before engaging an agent. That they do not want to “waste” an agent’s time early on to help them determine this.

One, if they help you through the process and work with you until closing, they are paid by the seller when you close on your house. It is their choice as to how they plan to use their time in their business. No skin off their teeth, as the saying goes, huh?

Two, a great agent can determine your needs and wants with a great complimentary consultation in an hour or less.

There is no substitute for a top notch Buyer Representative. If you decide to do the work early footwork of what you think it takes to get started by yourself – which might be ill-informed by online information or what someone might tell you – no fault of your own, this takes a lot of time and work. The information that you find online, that you might elect to use as resources, can be incomplete, incorrect and not up to date. Can one believe all they read on the internet? Note that none of the real estate portals that the public has access to are real time. That’s why perhaps you showed up for an open house that was listed in the MLS as being open, and the unit had since gone under contract and the open house was canceled. Not fun, especially if you planned your day around it – or there was freezing rain – like buyers told me last weekend when this happened to them.

More on timing: There is work that needs to be done to establish your ability to buy a house. For instance, perhaps there is an erroneous item that shows up on your credit report and it takes time to get it removed before you can have a lender look at your true credit score and thereby get the best loan rate possible. A higher rate often means that you will not be approved for as expensive of a house.

I hope this was helpful! If you would like a complimentary hard cover book that we at Keller Williams have designed just for first time home buyers, please let me know. Or ask questions, and I will be delighted to help! Have a great day!

Cheers,
Ken

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Ticketing Kids in Arlington?

Did you know that this summer kids all around the Arlington area are being given tickets by Arlington County Police officers? That’s right. But instead of these tickets being given for bad behavior, they are actually being handed out for good behavior.

In conjunction with the 7-11 stores in a program entitled “Operation Chill,” coupons (tickets) for free slurpees are being awarded to kids who are spotted doing spontaneous good deeds. Examples of good deeds include helping another person, wearing a bicycle helmet, picking up trash or participating in other positive community activities.

The next time I see the blue lights in my rear view mirror in Arlington, I’ll cross my fingers that I will be ticketed with a slurpee coupon (for doing the good deed of helping you with your Arlington real estate need)! LOL

Ken & Team Yes I Ken!

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WINTER ARLINGTON HOME STAGING TIPS

It’s cold out, the grass is brown, the trees are bare HERE IN ARLINGTON,VA. And yet, you want to sell your house. What can you do to stage your house to put it in it’s best light during these winter months?
Here are a few simple tips:
1) Make sure the sidewalk and drive way are always clear of snow, ice or dead leaves.
2) Make sure your windows are clean to let in as much natural light as possible. Read the rest of this entry »

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HOME STAGING FOR THE HOLIDAYS IN ARLINGTON

Q: My house is currently on the market IN ARLINGTON. Should I stage it for the holidays?

A: Realtors were recently polled on this very topic (Realtor.com). The majority of them (37%) thought that including a few non-religious decorations make a home feel inviting . 28% thought that home owners should put out all of their decorations, including religious  ones.

Lighting a fireplace, using winter-scented home fragrances, and placing blankets on couches, beds and reading nooks are also great ways to make your home feel cozy during the holidays. Because of the short daylight hours at this time of year, it’s also a good idea to update your outdoor lighting.

Staging your home in Arlington during the holidays can be a great opportunity to highlight the cozy atmosphere of your home.

Getting it SOLD – for YOU!

Ken Courtade

The Yes I Ken! Team

703.981.4646warm house

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What are the Best Questions to Ask Realtors I’m Interviewing to LIST and SELL my House?

This is so often a consideration for homeowners, let’s make it an ongoing conversation here. Consider this part one of an unnumbered series!

Some top questions include ones that draw out the solidity of the agent’s own business and that of her Broker’s (her office’s). Because, first off, is it not important to know that the agent is seriously dependent on doing great work for you in getting your home sold in order to be paid and hopefully have a profitable business, Read the rest of this entry »

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