Buying Northern Virginia
real estate is a major undertaking, one with emotional, financial, and
practical implications. A little planning beforehand can yield
some significant benefits once you start looking in earnest.
Good planning can also help you find the best deal in the Northern
Virginia Real Estate market; find the right house, and reduce the
stress of the buying process.
Here are 10
considerations to review before the search begins:
Develop a Wish List
develop a list of features that are most important to you before you
start looking at homes. Once the search in Northern Virginia
begins it is easy to forget items or get caught up in the excitement
and buy a home that doesn’t meet your initial targets – only to be
sorry after the closing. You may not be able to find a home
with every feature you want, but at least make sure you have
considered the deficiency and decided you can accept it.
Your Target Areas
which communities, Counties and or Cities in the Northern Virginia
area will meet your needs and expectations. Key considerations
include ease of commute, quality of schools, accessibility of local
shopping and entertainment, and the quality of area recreational
Research the Market
important to know what to expect before diving into the real estate
market. Can you afford the house you expect? Is the
market overheated? Is so; you may have to move quickly and
aggressively when you find something suitable. On the other
hand, if sales are slow you may be able to shop for a deal.
Your agent can be a big help with your market research.
Work with Your Agent
your real estate agent knows your needs and desires so he or she can
show you properties that are suitable. If affordability is an
issue discuss with your agent what you can realistically expect to
find in your price range.
for a home can be a hectic and stressful process, so it makes sense
to get organized before you begin. Assemble all of your
financial records to speed up the mortgage approval process.
pre-qualified for a mortgage is a great idea for several reasons.
In addition to giving you a strong idea of what you can afford and
lowering your stress level during the home search, pre-qualification
can really give you a bargaining chip when dealing with sellers.
A seller may be inclined to accept a lower offer – or take yours
over another buyers – if your financing is already lined up.
Assess Things Realistically
consider each step in the buying process calmly and realistically.
If the market is booming you will have to be prepared to act
quickly, but you still need to exercise reasoned judgment.
Similarly, if you plan to purchase a home that needs work try to get
accurate and reasonable estimates of the costs involved so you don’t
end up with any nasty surprises after the closing.
Cover Your Contingencies
make any offer contingent upon any conditions you will require
before closing. Common contingencies such as financing,
satisfactory inspection, and the repair of deficient items in the
house are routinely included in the contract. An offer is
usually made before you have obtained complete information on a
property and the contract contingencies protect you until you can
check things out fully.
Don’t Forget the Home Inspection
comprehensive home inspection prior to closing is a must. Make
sure to hire a qualified inspector and to allow time to review the
report prior to closing. That said, it is not necessary to
insist that the seller address every single item on the report.
Many inspection report items essentially represent minor wear and
tear and demanding the seller repair every one of these can wreck
the deal. Your Realtor and attorney can provide guidance in
are often protracted – or even delayed – because the parties are not
prepared in advance. Make sure to bring your file of all
paperwork pertaining to the purchase. At the very least you
will want to have the contract, all documents pertaining to your
mortgage, and copies of all inspection reports and correspondence
between the parties. While you will be bringing certified
funds to pay the purchase costs, it is a good idea to bring your
checkbook as well – to cover any minor last minute expenses.