Buying a House Real Estate

Timeline for Buying a House

Gene and Katie Hamilton

Here’s an overview of what’s involved and things to consider before making such a large commitment and investment. Owning a home is money-dependent meaning the amount of money you have in the bank or investments for a down payment, and your monthly income to pay for mortgage payments and expenses. Talk to bankers, realtors and mortgage loan officers and use online calculators to learn the options you may have. When you have your finances in order get a preapproved mortgage so you know what you can spend on a house including the expenses.

You can learn a lot at real estate listing sites like Trulia and Zillow about prices, square footage, taxes, comparable property and value and see pictures of the house inside and out. But until you drive through a neighborhood and see it firsthand you can’t get a feel for it. Check out the school district (for kids), public transportation for proximity to work, and notice the condition of neighboring houses.

When you find a house you want submit a reasonable offer through the realtor and hope it’s accepted. A buyer’s market usually means there’s an oversupply of houses for sale and you have leverage to negotiate a price; but a seller’s market put them in a position to hold out for their price. When they can many buyers wait to buy when it’s to their advantage, not the seller’s.

When a buyer’s offer is accepted and the transaction is under contract three things happen. There a lot of paper work as the process winds down and it can be stressful when forms are misfiled or lost and scheduling can be an issue, but when you’re handed the keys to your new home it’s the beginning of a new adventure of owning a home.

For information about the cost of home improvements visit and compare the cost of hiring a contractor with doing the job yourself.

Real Estate

Buying a House in 2013

There’s a “new normal” way in which successful real estate agents are operating in today’s housing market. Technology is changing their game plan and modus operandi in ways to meet their customers’ lifestyle and demands. The first time buyer is a significant part of the house buying market and much younger – between 35-40 – than the realtor, whose average age is 57 years old. Those Boomer agents who are early adapters and embrace change will clearly be the winners.

In the past a realtor brought houses to his or her customer. But last year more homes were sold to customers who brought the house to the realtor instead of the other way around. Clearly the impact of the Internet has changed the house selling business and the techno-savvy agent appears to be on the winning side.

If buying and selling a house is about building relationships social media makes it easy for agents who embrace it. Today’s customer spends 87% of their time text messaging, 78% using social media and 66% on a mobile device so an agent at ease with the technology can make it a win-win situation for both him/herself and their customer.

Lowes, the home center retailer, is offering a Realtors Benefits Program in the form of free marketing tools that provide customized direct mail and email to the realtor’s list of customers along with merchandise discounts. These tools and resources should be as appealing to the realtor as it is to the home buyer. That’s good for everyone.

Visit us at to compare how much it costs to do-it-yourself vs. hire a contractor for hundreds of home improvement projects.