Buying a house is likely to be the largest financial transaction of your life. In 2023 it’s getting more and more costly with home prices still rising and interest rates going up. That leads to buyers needing to cut costs and save money anywhere they can. Read on, then, to discover 4 hacks to save money when buying a house.
Hack # 1. Ask for What You Want
Our first hack to help you save money when buying a house is simple, but not always easy for many people to do. But it works, so you should muster up the courage to do it. And that is to ask for the things you want. That is where your experienced agent comes in. An experienced agent knows the best ways to ask for the things you want. One of those ways may be to find out what the seller really wants besides the highest price. They may want something like a short time to lease back, needing to sell quicker due to a job transfer or to take some items like maybe some personal items that would normally stay such as some of the planted landscaping. If you can give the sellers something that they really would like to have they may be more open to a lower offer than some of your competition.
For the past few years across the country, the real estate market has been a strong seller’s market. As a result, sellers, because they have been in the driver’s seat, have been largely unwilling to make concessions and grant perks. But there is evidence that the market is cooling a bit, and sellers have lost some of their leverage. The upshot is that they are likely to be more willing to throw in some extras to sweeten the deal. So concesssions which might not have been given in the hotter markets may be allowed in a softening market.
So be sure to ask the sellers for what you want. This might be requesting that they leave larger items like appliances. Be sure, then, to ask the seller to leave behind things you may want, such as a refrigerator, washer and dryer, and patio furniture. If they agree to leave these items with the house, you won’t have to buy them when you move – which can save you a significant amount of money. And may save them the space or chore of moving them.
Many sellers are downsizing and don’t want to have to move these items and then find a way to fit them into the new home’s space. If you know they are moving a far distance like out of state, the sellers may be willing to part with items they might normally take. The moving van may not fit everything they want to take or they could choose a smaller moving van if they leave items for the new buyers. With bidding wars less common, they may be willing to grant your requests. Ultimately, you’ll never know if you don’t ask. And it does not hurt to ask.
Hack # 2. Improve Your Credit Score
One of the best ways to save money is by improving your credit score. The better your credit score the better rate and better terms you will get on your mortgage. Lenders offer better rates to borrowers who are more financially responsible and less of a risk.
Just a percentage point or two can save you money over the life of your loan. So get to work now improving your credit score for that best rate.
How to improve credit score fast gives one tips which goes a bit against the grain on adding new credit. Most credit gurus state you should certainly avoid taking out new lines of credit, pay down (or off) existing debt, and make payments on time.
Don’t neglect to check your credit report for errors. That can be more common than you may think. If you find any errors on your report that impact your score, get them cleared up before applying for a mortgage. Make sure that all 3 credit bureaus are corrected if all three reflect the same error.
Hack # 3. Try to Pay 20% Down
You can also work toward saving enough money to be able to make a 20% down payment. This too will allow you to save money when buying a house for a few reasons.
First, your monthly mortgage payments will be smaller, thus increasing your chances of paying off the loan early and saving a significant amount on interest. Second, a 20% down payment will allow you to access conventional loans, which typically often have better terms than, say, FHA loans. And, finally, you won’t have to pay for private mortgage insurance (PMI). PMI adds to the cost of your loan. What is PMI?
Even if you can’t manage to come up with a 20% down payment, paying as much down as possible will still save you some. Or the other factor is that it will give you some money for those unexpected expenses like having to buy a refrigerator or the cost of moving. For some guidance here, you can contact Floresville agent at (210) 216-7722.
Hack # 4. Buy During the Off Season or Buy a Fixer-Upper
There are two remaining tactics that will help you save money: buying during the off-season and / or buying a fixer-upper.
Historically, spring and early summer have been the hottest seasons in real estate. The weather is nice, people are house hunting, they are wanting to move in before school starts the new year, and those months can be the best months for sellers. During colder months, though, buyers are far fewer for several reasons such as the weather or the holiday season means buyers are busy with other activities and that means sellers may be willing to sell for less. This is especially the case if sellers couldn’t sell their house during the spring or has to list it during the winter when prices can be lower. Buying during the winter just may allow you to get a deal and save money. The only time when the sales are higher in the winter is a city with a heavy military presence. That is one of the times or the year when the military does PCSing. The military makes family change of stations at the end of the year.
The other option here to save money is, of course, buying a fixer-upper. This has the potential to get you the best deal and save you the most money. But you do have to be willing to invest some money and/or sweat equity to make the needed repairs and upgrades. So if you take this route, you must make sure you know exactly what you’re getting into and whether the savings will outweigh the repair costs. Many people may think they are open to a fixer upper but either don’t realize the cost or their lack of experience with repairs. So in the event you take that route do it with open eyes to the cost or time line
Work With an Experienced Floresville Agent
These are some effective ways to save money when buying a house, but there are more. And with home prices still rising, you need to be aware of all the strategies to save. An experienced Floresville agent can help you do just that, especially by bringing to bear her negotiating skills to get you the best deal possible. So if you’re considering buying a house in Floresville and want to save money, contact me today at (210) 216-7722.
Floresville Real Estate Agent – Faye Y Taylor Realtor® is here for help and to answer any questions you might have
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