If you’ve never been in a position to have purchased or sold a home, you might have a few preconceived notions about real estate and the buying/selling process. Below we briefly outline some of the most common misconceptions.
- A home inspection is done to either Pass or Fail a home. This is simply not the case. A home inspection is done to assess a home, and the report provides data on the condition of the home. The report provides a summary of findings on all systems, such as the plumbing, electrical and heating/air conditioning. It also provides data on the condition of the roof, the foundation, presence of mold or termite damage. Depending on what is found during inspection, the transaction might more forward, or you might need to reenter negotiations.
- Open houses will only attract the most serious buyers. This is not necessarily true. While there are many serious buyers that attend open houses, they also tend to attract curious neighbors, other people that are selling their homes that are looking to compare theirs to yours, and believe it or not, they often attract people who just have nothing better to do and want to check out decorating techniques.
- Online pricing estimators provide accurate housing values. What is important to understand is these estimators are only providing estimates based on factors such as how many bedrooms, how many bathrooms, age of home and the zip code in which the property is located. They do not take into account recent renovations and updates, unique features the home might have, or data regarding the reason and pricing for homes that have recently sold in the area.
- It is always smart to start with a low offer when trying to purchase a home. This tactic could backfire immediately. While you might want to start with a low offer in hopes of negotiating and compromising on a price, the seller might take the offer as a complete insult and might not come back with any counter offer at all. It is important to be very careful when planning your offer and always take advice from your real estate agent, especially in a seller’s market.
Always do your research. Information is quite literally at your fingertips, so take advantage of the internet. Speak with your real estate agent and be willing to learn from the professionals. Buying and selling a home will go much more smoothly if you are educated and let go of the many real estate misconceptions out there.