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How to Make Sure You’re Getting a Fair Price on a Home

Every home buyer that I’ve worked with has one thing in common – they want to make sure that they’re getting a fair price on a house. The goal for most home buyers is to not only find a house that they love, but to build equity in their investment overtime. Luckily, this goal is much more achievable in the post-pandemic housing market where inventory has increased, and home prices have gone down in most areas of the country. Here’s how to tell whether you’re getting a great deal on a house:

  1. Ask your real estate agent to send you a list of comparable properties

    If you’re a home buyer, a comparable property would be any home that has sold recently and has similar characteristics to the home you’re considering. Similar characteristics include size, condition, and amenities. This will give you a better idea as to how much the home you’re interested in is worth.

  2. Consider how long the home has been on the market

    Days on market is something that you should take into consideration before determining your offer price. If the home has been listed for a long time and the list price has not decreased, that’s a good indicator that it’s overpriced. Consult with your buyer’s agent on how far under asking you should offer.

  3. Take some time to think about how badly you want the home

    Think about how badly you want the home and what that means to you. If you really love the house and can see yourself living there for a long time, it’s best to put in a strong offer to increase the likelihood of the seller accepting it. If you’re not competing with other buyers for the house, or your feelings about it are lukewarm, you have more room for negotiation.

  4. Ask your real estate agent

    In addition to asking your real estate agent to provide you with a list of comparable properties, ask him or her whether the property you’re considering is priced appropriately. If your agent is experienced, they should have a good idea whether the property is priced fairly or not within the current state of your local housing market.

  5. Get a inspection and an appraisal

    Once your offer gets accepted, getting a home inspection and an appraisal will help to ensure that you’re paying fair market value for your new home. If the home inspector finds that the house needs major repairs, you can ask the seller to make the repairs for you or to lower the purchase price. Assuming you’re getting a home loan, the next step is for your lender to order an appraisal. If the appraisal comes in lower than your offer price, it’s possible that you’re not getting a fair deal. Your lender will likely not let you purchase the home unless you pay the difference out of pocket, or the seller is willing to lower the price.

READ NEXT: Questions to Ask When Hiring a Real Estate Agent

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