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Five Ways in Which Buyers Pay Too Much

Homebuyers are often so eager to close a deal and get into the home they’ve fallen in love with that they often undermine their own best interests and pay more than they have to, which only leads to frustration as well as thousands of unnecessary dollars spent over the life of their mortgage. Buyers in hot markets as well as first-time homebuyers are the most susceptible to this fault, primarily because they have a hard time exercising restraint and discipline when it comes to the price.

If you want to avoid tumbling into this same pitfall and spending way more than you should, here are five things you should keep in mind to know if you’re paying too much for your house.

Avoid Staging & Open House Buzz

Realtors will often host open houses to try and drum up business and seek out a potential buyer. But all the crowds, food, music, and ooh-ing and aah-ing fellow-lookers will often bring out the competitive nature in everyone, who often have the mental resolve that they won’t be beat. This becomes especially true if the house has been staged properly, or made to look beautiful and attractive with bright lights, sample furniture, and more.

Remember: how a house looks when you see it isn’t how it’s going to look when you finally move in, so you want to temper your expectations. Also, it’s better to request a private showing of the home in order to ask the important questions, like “How’s the plumbing?” “When was the roof last replaced?” and “Is the air conditioner still under warranty?” Knowing the true underbelly of the home will make you far less inclined to overpay.

Take Your Time

Buyers who are in a hurry almost always wind up overpaying. In some cases, this can be a couple who has already sold their home, or someone who has recently experienced a major life change such as a new job in a new area. Buying a house is a process that takes time, and condensing it to a two-week ordeal means you’re bound to make a mistake or two, including not really getting the opportunity to negotiate or see just what it is you’re getting.

Having a real estate agent represent you who’s familiar with the area is a good way to mitigate this issue. Agents are often familiar with loads of different properties and can help you reasonably condense the amount of time necessary to complete a sale with minimal mistakes if you’re on a time crunch.

Lowball Offers

A “lowball” offer is one that’s substantially below the asking price, and is a tactic that you’ll sometimes see used on homes that have been on the market for months with little to no interest from potential buyers. In some cases, a homeowner who simply wants to get rid of their property will take the offer and accept the losses. But this isn’t all that common.

In most cases, sellers won’t take the offer seriously, or worse, see it as an insult. As a result, they’re likely not going to present a reasonable counteroffer, or even present one at all, and you’ve essentially shot yourself in the foot. Being respectful and reasonable with your initial offers will not only help you pay less for your home, but open the door for reasonable and productive negotiations.

Know the Neighborhood

A home may look beautiful and have everything you’re looking for, but what if it’s located in a neighborhood that’s riddled with crime, noise complaints, and all sorts of other problems? You may not realize this at first glance when driving through a neighborhood, but you definitely need to be well-informed about the home you’re considering buying.

Your best ally for learning more about a neighborhood? An experienced realtor, who can tell you all about reported crime rates, school quality, parking availability, and more.

Falling for “Shifting the Goalpost”

Sellers have figured out a few underhanded tactics to try and drive up the price they’ll get for their home without ever actually doing anything to improve its value. One such tactic has been dubbed “moving the goalpost,” and is when the seller continually reneges on the deal they initially agreed to, only to jack up the price. The hope is that the buyer loves the property so much they’re willing to go along with this increase out of fear of losing it, particularly if it doesn't seem like it's a big increase. Sometimes a greedy seller will renege two, three, or even more times throughout the process in an effort to jack the price up as high as possible.

Don’t stand for this: if the seller initially agreed to a particular deal, hold them to it. If they refuse to drop back down to the offer they initially accepted, odds are they likely weren’t going to go through with that deal in the first place, and you’re probably going to be paying too much for the home if you do eventually buy it.

Need an experienced Valencia realtor to represent you when purchasing a home in the Santa Clarita valley? Call Dippy Real Estate today at (661) 441-3304 to request a consultation and start searching for your dream home!