Henry T. Matos' Blog
156 Bay State Rd, Methuen, MA 01844
The lawn is trimmed, the house is spotless and you're ready for a real estate agent to show off your home to a prospective buyer -- but what about your pets? Pets and showings don't always mix; the potential buyers may be afraid of or allergic to your animals -- or your pets could slip right past them and end up roaming the neighborhood. For the safety and comfort of all, confine or remove your pets during a showing in one of the following ways.
What to do with Pets When you Show your Home
Contain them: This works best with smaller animals, like cats, petite, quiet dogs and even exotic animals like house rabbits. When they are present, but not roaming around, your pet will be safe and won't be much of a distraction. Ideally, a pet carrier or crate can be used for this purpose -- and allows your home to be shown at a moment's notice.
Take a walk or drive: If you know when a showing is happening and will be home, then put on a leash and head to the sidewalk or car. Even a very friendly large breed dog can be alarming to some prospective buyers and any dog is a distraction. Showings don't take long, so if you can conveniently do so, taking a walk or drive gets you both out of the house and out of the way -- and ensures your home is the true focus of the visit.
Rely on a neighbor: If you have a neighbor, friend or family member nearby that can pet sit for an afternoon, this is a good time to visit. Your pet will benefit from the attention and fresh environment and you won't have to worry about them getting out or alarming a buyer.
Consider boarding: If your agent is holding an open house, consider boarding your pet on the big day. You won't have to worry about finding a place for them to stay and you'll be able to show the home with confidence. If you do have many people walking through the house, even a friendly pet can be overwhelmed, so this is often the best solution for all.
Securing your pets while your home is shown will give you peace of mind about their safety and will also allow the viewers to envision themselves living there without distraction. It also gives you a chance to check all latches, doors and gates before returning your pet to their normal space -- prospective buyers could leave a door, gate or window open, allowing for an easy escape route for a curious pet. Take these simple steps before a showing and you will benefit in several key ways -- and your pets will, too.
25 Golden Oaks Dr, Salem, NH 03079
Buying your first home is undoubtedly a long and complex process for someone who has little to no experience in the subject. Your average first-time homeowner learns as they go, with the help of their real estate agent and mortgage lender.
But, even so, first-time buyers often make many mistakes along the way that they could have avoided with prior knowledge and preparation.
In today’s article, we’re going to cover 5 of the most common mistakes that first-time homebuyers make when purchasing a home. From the first house you look at up until closing on your first home, we’ll cover common mistakes from each step of the way to give you the knowledge you need to make the best home buying decisions.
1. Shopping for homes preemptively
Once you decide that you’re interested in potentially buying a home in the near future, it’s tempting to hop online and start looking at listings. But, searching for your dream home at this stage is a poor use of your time.
It’s best to use this time to start thinking about the bigger picture. Have you secured financial aspects of owning a home, such as a down payment, a solid credit score, and two years of steady employment history?
You’ll also need to have a clear picture of what you want your life to look like for the next 5-7 years. Will you still want to live in the same area, or will your job lead you elsewhere?
These are all questions to ask yourself before you start house hunting that will inform your process along the way and make your hunt a lot easier.
2. Not knowing your budget
It’s a common mistake for first-time buyers to go into the house hunting process without a clearly mapped budget. You want to make sure that after all of your expenses (mortgage payment, utilities, bills, debt, etc.) that you still have leftover income for savings, retirement, and an emergency fund.
Make a detailed spreadsheet of your expenses and determine how much you can afford each month before you start shopping for mortgages.
3. Borrowing the maximum amount
While it may be tempting to buy the most expensive house you can get approved for, there are a number of reasons this might be a bad idea for you, financially. Stretching your budget each month is putting yourself at risk for not being able to contribute to savings, retirement, and emergency funds.
Furthermore, you may find that the extra square-footage you purchased wasn’t worth having to cut corners in other areas of your life, like hobbies, entertainment, and dining out.
4. Forgetting important expenses
If you’re currently renting an apartment, you might be unaware of some of the lesser-known costs of homeownership. Your chosen lender will provide you with an estimate of the closing costs, which you’ll have to budget for.
However, there are also maintenance, repairs, utilities, and other bills that you’ll have to figure into your monthly budget.
5. Waiving contingencies or giving the benefit of the doubt
While it may seem like an act of goodwill to give the seller the benefit of the doubt when it comes to things like home inspections, it’s usually a bad idea to waive contingencies.
The process of purchasing a home, along with a purchase contract, have been designed to protect both your interests and the seller’s interests. It isn’t selfish to want to know exactly what you’re getting into when making a purchase as significant as a home.
There is always an undeniable appeal to move into a brand new home. After all, there shouldn’t be any problems with a new construction home, right? While shiny new appliances and brand new flooring can be appealing, there are many advantages to buying an older home.
It may seem obvious, but older homes are less expensive than newer homes. You might be able to get a bit more for your money if you decide to buy an older home.
Older homes tend to have a bit better quality in their construction. Some aspects of older construction homes cannot even be reproduced with all of the technology that we have in the present day. It’s often true that “they don’t build homes like they used to.” Certain building materials of the past are actually more sturdy than the materials that are used in the present day. Older homes have stood the test of time for a reason!
The Location Is An Established Neighborhood
If you’re not looking to move into an up and coming neighborhood, you could be better off buying an older construction home. You’ll know that a neighborhood has already been established and that people have enjoyed living in the area for years before you got there when you find an older home to purchase. In finding a neighborhood, you’ll look at the important factors like the school district, the walkability of the area and the crime rate. Older homes tend to be in more stable areas. Keep that in mind.
Older Homes Have More Personality
Sure, you could move into a street with new construction and be happy there. Yet, if you move into an older home, you will find a lot of advantages. The landscaping may be more well-established, allowing you to find your favorite features on the outside of the home right when you move in. In a new home, it could take years to establish the same type of curb appeal that you’ll get from moving into an older home.
There’s More Space In An Older Home
An older home may afford you much more yard space and overall square footage. As the world gets more and more developed, space runs short. Older homes were constructed at times when space was at a maximum. These homes were built on larger lots, giving homeowners the advantage of more space.
While you may think that buying a new construction home is the way to go, older homes offer many different things that newer construction homes just can’t bring to the table. Broaden your search and look for older homes, you could be very surprised!