photo: Brooklyn Real Estate
Need guidance as you launch your search to buy a home? Dottie Herman has some answers for you!
In a recent broadcast of her radio show “Eye on Real Estate," Herman -- the president of Prudential Douglas Elliman -- offered listeners three key steps to follow when starting your home search. Herman wants you to get a good idea for the price you are willing to pay, how to access the value of a house you could buy potentially, and how you can become the most "educated buyer" possible by using the best resources available to you.
Potential buyers always want to know: How much should they pay for a home? That question is a big one -- with lots of answers! But Herman says that you can get a better idea about the price you should pay for a home by doing your own field research. Keep in mind that value is always an opinion, which leads to a more formal price. Herman says, “It’s an opinion...what you think the home is worth, based on how you are going to use it.” The best value for the best price is determined how you personally feel about the home. Whether you agree with the listing price is based upon whether you think the home offers enough value in comparison to the price. For example, if you want to live in a city setting and there is a subway or metro system near the house you are interested in buying, then that house will have more value to you than a house that is farther away from a public transportation system. Make a list of the amenities that are valuable to you, as this will affect what you ultimately determine to be a fair price.
The Price You Pay
The price you pay for your new home always is negotiable between the buyer and owner. To get closer to a happy agreement, however, do a little field research. Survey the homes for sale in the neighborhood and the homes that have sold recently. Compare side-by-side the homes that have similar amenities, locations, and features. Then, compare the home you want to purchase. How does it match up? This is not a hard-and-fast rule for determining the price of a home, but it will give you an idea of a concrete price to start with as you search. “Cost and value are not what the price of the home should be or shouldn’t be,” Herman advises. Instead, they give you a starting point for your own valuation of the house.
Find a Broker
You need a real estate broker to get you through the process most of the time. A broker just makes things smoother for you -- especially as a first-time homebuyer. Herman advises that you should ask what the property is "worth with the conditions we are in today?” A broker can help you answer this question with specific details, including coming up with detailed reports on other properties in your target area and how long the properties were on the market when they finally sold. Your broker also acts as a guide, helping you to see the properties up close and personal.
content and photo provided by the office of Dottie Herman, CEO Prudential Douglas Elliman