Buying Tips



Ready to buy? Just looking? Take the time to think about what you are looking for now and how your needs might change in the future. These tips will help you formulate your thoughts.


If you have to resell soon, don't buy an unusual home. An odd house shape or floor plan may be intriguing to you, but if you plan to sell the house soon, your choice might not appeal to the average buyer. 

Even if the quality of the school district doesn't matter to you now, remember it might someday, or it might to a future buyer.

Expect lower maintenance costs with a brand-new home.

Never tell a seller's broker how much you will raise your offer for a particular house.

When interest rates are low, opt for a fixed mortgage.

Pay attention to floor plans. Changing room layouts later can be costly.

In the purchase year, you can deduct from your taxes points paid by either party on the purchase of your own residence.

If the present owner has a title insurance policy less than 3 years old, you could have substantial savings by buying a reissue of that policy rather than a completely new one.

Pay attention to the original listing date of the homes you inspect. Sellers tend to be more flexible on the price the longer the home is on the market.

A house that's sited to take advantage of sun, wind, and topography costs less to heat and cool, and can save thousands of dollars over the years in utility bills.

If you think you may need more space in the near future, be sure the house and lot will allow for expansion.

Redoing a kitchen is likely to be expensive. So, be sure of what you need and want before you buy.

Don't buy a house with foundation problems. Although most foundation problems can be corrected, repair work is usually expensive.

Before you buy a house that may have a wet basement, have the basement assessed by a licensed home inspector. The solution could be costly.

A roof that complements the style of a home and is carefully maintained adds to the home's visual appeal and its resale value.   

A light-colored roof reflects heat and is best in areas where air-conditioning is the greater energy user. In colder weather climates, a dark roof is preferable because it absorbs more heat. In temperate climates, a middle-range shade is best.

The three most popular wall choices are brick, wood siding, and stucco. About half of all home shoppers prefer brick for exterior walls, about one-third prefer wood siding, and about one-fifth prefer stucco.

Wood floors suggest warmth, quality, and good taste and are an asset when it comes time to sell a house.

Most home shoppers prefer a combination of ceramic tile and vinyl wallpaper as a covering for bathroom walls, creating a positive effect on the house's resale value. Ceramic tile is usually installed wherever water comes in contact with the wall.

Plant deciduous trees, shrubs, and vines on south and west sides of the home to provide shade in the summer and sunshine in the winter. Remember, trees enhance the beauty and value of a lot and house.


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