5 Things to Tell Your Real Estate Agent When Shopping for a House

What an exciting time this is for you! Shopping for a house is a major step no matter which phase of life you may be in. You may also be feeling some trepidation right along with the excitement.

That’s okay, too. But we can help you remove some of the anxiety out of shopping for a new home. Below are five important things that you will want to share with your realtor when you begin your house-hunting quest.

Your Honest Price Range

Now is the time for keeping it real. There is no point in wasting your time or the realtor’s time looking at homes that are outside of your price range. If you know that you have only pre-qualified for a home in the low six figures, skip the million-dollar home tour. It will only leave you dissatisfied with the options that you can afford.

Any Dealbreakers You Might Have

If you know that you need a large, fenced (or fence-able) backyard for your family’s dogs to have room to run, it will be pointless to show you a series of condos. Ditto for school districts in which you are determined to remain — or to land in. Everyone has some non-negotiable lines in the sand when shopping for homes, so laying those cards out on the table initially saves you time and frustration later.

Where Your Wiggle Room Lies

Everybody has some, so fess up to yours. Is a fireplace mandatory — or could you do without (or add one later, perhaps?) Maybe you want a house in the city but could still live with a home three miles out in the ‘burbs.

Keep in mind that amenities can frequently be added later if they truly are important to you and your family. Garages can be converted into mother-in-law suites and walls knocked down to expand two bedrooms into one larger living area. Your realtor likely can suggest other space transformations that could occur to get you ever closer to your goal.

Whether You Are HOA-Compatible

The world can pretty much be drawn into two groups of people: Those who live happily ever after in HOA-governed communities and those for whom the mere thought is anathema. You need to clarify where you fall on that spectrum.

If you want to fly your flag 365 days of the year or tend to leave your Christmas decorations up a bit longer than most of your neighbors, you probably should look for homes that are in neighborhoods without HOA covenants. Conversely, if the idea of your neighbor parking his camper in his driveway gives you hives, the orderly world of an HOA community might be your idea of heaven.

How Much Time You Have to Find a House

There is a big difference between a pair of empty-nesters leisurely contemplating downsizing to a townhouse within the next year or so and the young couple with three kids who are closing in six weeks on the home that they sold. 

When there is a real sense of urgency, make sure that you communicate that clearly to your realtor. He or she can then be sure to pull out all the stops to get you into the home of your dreams.

Shared Information Allows Your Realtor to Help You the Most

When you share the above information with your realtor, you allow that individual to do their best to find you a home that checks off as many of your boxes as possible. The worst thing that you can do is fail to be honest with your realtor. That only leads to miscommunication and the possibility of missing out on the deal of a lifetime.

Thinking about relocating to the Boston area or the surrounding communities? Working with a realtor with the Coleman Group can help clarify your options and narrow your search.

Henry Mason

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