Home Buying Challenges: Overcoming Your Personal Reservations

Home Buying Challenges: Overcoming Your Personal Reservations
  • Opening Intro -

    It is true: when you shop for a home you'll come across one or more that meet your criteria, but also have at least one flaw.

    Those flaws may be a deal breaker, but they do not have to be.

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Instead, consider the challenge at hand and what you must do to overcome that obstacle. If you accept the challenge, you’ll soon be in your ideal home with the obstacle ready to be moved out of the way.

1. Substandard interior. Everything about the home appeals to you, except for the interior. The home is laid out as you like, but it there is one big obstacle in your way. And that obstacle could be carpeting instead of hard wood floors or paneling instead of drywall. Both problems can be remedied and are a point of negotiation with the owner. If there are hard wood floors underneath the carpeting, you can pull up the carpets and strip and wax the floors. The same can be said for paneling — remove same, then repair and paint the walls. The cost for this work can be negotiated with the current owner, perhaps splitting that expense evenly.

2. Highway proximity. You found the home that checks off every single one of your requirements. It meets your styling, layout, room and condition requirements, top matters on your list. One drawback, however, is the home’s location. The neighborhood is beautiful and safe, but it backs up to a major highway, a commercial district, or to a business park. The din from the highway or the site of a neighboring commercial building may detract from its appeal — big time. Consider how you will use your home. If the noise inside is not perceptible and you aren’t outdoors people anyway, you may have found a diamond in the rough. Especially if the home is priced below market value and the owners know that the neighboring drawbacks are a turn off to most buyers.

3. Too small. The neighborhood is beautiful, safe and home prices are on the rise. The home you’re considering is nearly ideal, but it is just a bit too small. If only it had a bonus room or if that half-bath was full bath, then it would meet your needs. This is where you may need to align what you can presently afford with your expectations. You can always add on to your home or modify it accordingly. Moreover, you can save toward that expansion and make the changes to your liking. You may not have exactly what you want from the start, but you will can have what you want later. You’ll also save on property taxes by choosing the more modest, pre-renovation version.

4. The home is a short sale. You found the home that meets your needs without any of the previous three problems apparent. Moreover, it is offered at a good price, and is something that you can afford. The obstacle? It is a short sale, one that the mortgage holder will look at carefully. Short sale homes can offer great value to the buyer, but only if the mortgage company accepts the seller’s offer. Here, you need to do your homework to discover what the seller owes on the home and the present value of that home. You also need to know the local market. You may need to present a competitive first offer to receive consideration. You also need much patience as the bank could take weeks if not months to accept your proposal.

Managing Expectations

Home buyers frequently have expectations that may be difficult to meet especially if they are young and are buying their first home. Keep in mind that your first home may not be your permanent residence, but if its “bones” are good you’ve got much that you can work with.

See AlsoNeighborhood Choices and Home Shopping Essentials

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About Author

Matthew C. Keegan

Matt Keegan is a freelance writer and editor as well as publisher of "Auto Trends Magazine", an online publication. Matt covers campus, consumer, business and financial topics on various websites and weblogs, and has been published in the "Houston Chronicle", "Sam's Club Magazine" and "Wisconsin Golfer".