Top Tips for Buying a Home This Year

Top Tips for Buying a Home This Year

Each year the real estate market looks a bit different. In 2021, it appears that home inventory is still low and demand is high. That makes this year a seller’s market. So, if you have a home to sell – good news – you’re in demand! However, if you are looking to buy a home this year, things will be a bit tougher. Don’t give up on your home buying dream! There are still ways you can set yourself up for success this year.

Searching in a Seller’s Market

This year has started off strong for home sellers and that will set the pace for a while until home inventory availability increases. This means that home buyers will struggle to find houses, may need to compromise on some of their wants and will be competing heavily with other buyers in the market. 

What can a potential homebuyer do to make this process run more smoothly?

  • Partner with an experienced, dedicated, and smart real estate agent. They will be your most important ally in this process.
  • Work with a lender to get preapproval so that you are ready to go when it’s time to make an offer.
  • Be flexible. In this type of market, it’s less likely you’ll find exactly what you want. Be clear on where you are willing to bend or compromise.
  • If you have some time on your hands, look into placing a bid on a newly constructed home instead. 
  • Dedicate the time to the search. Staying on top of listings and keeping an eye out for homes going on sale may give you the edge.
  • Know your limits. Be smart when a bidding war starts to get out of hand. 
  • You may not be able to negotiate the way you would in a buyer’s market. Lowballing and demanding too much could get you moved to the bottom of the offer list.

Home Prices Going Up

Due to the fact that inventory is low and demand is high, prices of homes on the market are expected to increase this year. Last year home prices jumped up a whopping 6.7% but 2021 forecasts are saying that this increase this year will be about half of that – 3.1%. Summer will be the most expensive time to buy so avoid that if you can. Inventory will play a big role in what you can and can’t do this year but if you can buy in colder months, you should save some money.

Real Estate Going Digital

While this was already in progress, the pandemic has accelerated the real estate industry’s move to utilizing more digital tools for buying and selling homes. Like many industries in 2020, real estate had to pivot to keep the market alive in a time when everything was locked down. This forced many in the industry to get creative about the way they buy and sell property. 

Expect virtual home tours, zoom meetings, and e-closings designed to keep people safe while still getting the job done. Relying on these tools won’t necessarily go away when the pandemic does. Fewer and smaller open house opportunities will continue to be the norm for a while. Even after, the efficiency of some of these new methods will persist long after our new normal arrives.

If you are looking to buy a home this year, we recommend pre-planning, patience, and being proactive. Staying on top of your credit score, getting your financials and paperwork in place, connecting with a lender and getting pre-approved, and talking to real estate agents early to find the right one for you are all ways you can prepare for success when buying a home in 2021 (or really any year, but especially this one).



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