It's the ideal scenario people have in mind when they want to buy a house: They spend a week looking, find the perfect home, make an offer, and get it accepted. Before they know it, they are on their way to their beautiful new home.
A real estate agent is there to help you accelerate and simplify the buying process. He or she will do everything possible to help you achieve that perfect scenario. But there is one thing to be careful of: Falling in love with a home when you are not ready to act.
Why Falling in Love with a Home Can Be a Worst-Case Scenario
Sometimes, people scour their local real estate market and don't find a home they feel is perfect. Instead, they have a lot of imperfect options. Each one has positives as well as a negative or two they'll have to work with. In the long run, this may not be such a bad thing.
If you run into a house that is perfect, you have a number of challenges to deal with:
- As emotions run high, you will be more likely to make bigger offers and counteroffers;
- You may find yourself justifying problems you uncover later;
- Sellers may notice your enthusiasm and use it to their advantage in negotiations;
- If you don't get the home in the long run, it could be a major blow to your morale.
All of these are stumbling blocks that can make a big difference to the outcome of your house hunt. When you sense that you're getting emotionally attached to any property, it's important to get your real estate agent involved right away. He or she can keep the process moving forward in your best interests, take on communications with the seller, and help you make decisions.
But here's the biggest issue: When you "fall in love," the clock is ticking. There is nothing more disappointing than falling in love with a home only to have someone else come along and snap it up. Buyers who are paying cash are usually able to make their offers more attractive to sellers, so properties can move quickly. This is especially true in markets that are highly desirable.
If you have fallen in love with a property, one of the best things you can do is stop looking at alternatives for the time being. The more places you look at, the easier it will be to think of other considerations and end up second-guessing yourself.
The next thing to do is get a sense of how long you have. Your real estate agent has ways to communicate with the seller without tipping your hand. They can determine how much interest there has been in the property and whether there are any truly serious offers on the horizon. However, the situation can change at any time.
If you absolutely must buy time, then communicating directly with the seller is an option. If you express your interest in a property, with a face-to-face meeting or a personal letter, you may have the chance to give yourself a bit more time. However, you might find yourself with a much harder bargainer at the negotiating table.
If you're just not ready, then remember this: An even better home may be waiting.
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