Hacks for the Home Buyer

Home Buyer Hacks

I was out showing property to a younger couple this week and their strategies for purchasing a home were really Brilliant! After spending an afternoon with them I thought more people should consider some of these ideas when they are homebuyering.  I have also decided (while doing some graphic design today) that Iwould make up a new word “homebuyering” kind of like “Strategery” and see where it takes me….Here are some Tips or Hacks as they are now called, to consider when Buying a Home.

Here are your Hacks:

  1. Buying Below Your Means and Make Extra Principal Payments:

Considering the current cost to Rent in Denver, purchasing the right home might be able to save you a couple of bucks per month over the equivalent rent.  While some buyers take this to mean they can purchase a much larger home with a payment more in line with what they are paying in rent, consider purchasing a home that is less than your current rent.  With the additional money, you can pay down debt, improve the property, save for retirement, travel, etc. Buying below your budget means that you can apply extra money to the principal balance of your mortgage each month to pay it down and save money in costly interest.  For example, paying an additional $50 a month towards the principal of a 30 year mortgage would decrease the term by 2 years, 9 months.

2. Is a 30 Year Fixed Mortgage Necessary Always?

This is an interesting one because the housing downturn swung the pendulum too far in the wrong direction with regard to mortgage products. We threw the baby out with the bathwater when pundits decided after the housing downturn that the reason we had the bubble was because too many people had adjustable-rate mortgages. I say further evaluation of the different products is in order! For a lot of people, an adjustable-rate mortgage is a great way to finance a purchase of a home, depending on how long you’re going to be in the property. If you’re going to be there for less than seven years, you should absolutely consider an adjustable-rate mortgage. If you got a 30-year fixed for that five-year period, you’re going to pay more per month to live in the same home, and the reason is that you’re basically buying an option for the right to stay in that home for 30 years. But if you know you’re going to be there less than seven, you could pay a lot less on that home with an adjustable-rate mortgage. It’s shortsighted to just dismiss a whole class of mortgage products because of the way the media reported on the them during the downturn.

3. When getting closer to making the final decision you might want to know:

If you get good cell service while in the house. I guess this could depend on who your carrier is, but why not take note of it while you are there.

If you are Buying in Colorado, which way does the home face. For faster snow melt consider being SW or W for less shoveling.

Homes with street with names sell better than homes that have numbers for names. I read that “Sunset” and “Lake” are the preferred names. In Colorado the Sunset wouldn’t be that hard, but Lake my prove to be more challenging.

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4. Get Instant Updates from the MLS

For the last 12 months, many first time home buyers in the Denver area have found it frustrating to purchase affordable houses because of a lack of housing inventory.  The solution: beat the other home buyers to the punch by seeing the homes as soon as they are listed for sale on the market.  Most very popular websites only update every 24 hours with new listings and that is simply too late.  Fortunately, the local multiple listing service has a feature that will notify potential buyers the instant a home is entered into the system that matches their criteria.

Our website, http://www.gowalters.com updates every 15 minutes with new listings. So hop on there and set up a search for yourself today!