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In a world where we are surrounded by beautiful home images on Instagram and Pinterest, along with TV shows dedicated to finding dream houses, the expectation to find the perfect home is sometimes very high. Often this expectation is unreasonable and unattainable. This is more true now than it has been in many years because of the low number of homes for sale.
While we want to find a home that meets every client’s budget, taste, and wishlist, the tight real estate market in Memphis makes the hunt more difficult. Additionally, some clients have a deadline to move, either for the start of a new school year or to get out of their current home.
As your Realtors, our role is to help you find a home that meets your needs and desires. But we also want the home you purchase to be a solid investment for your future. Remember, our firm is will be 150 years old in 2018. We have helped many buyers and sellers throughout the Memphis metro area, and finding “the perfect home” is unlikely.
Take it from us – the best home for you may have a few flaws. The questions are: can you see beyond the flaws and are you willing to make the necessary improvements?
Especially over the last few years, the housing market in Memphis has been very good for sellers. This is especially true for medium-priced and starter homes. Multiple offers, quick turnovers, and paying over asking price are now commonplace in certain areas and price ranges.
Now that summer is here, the competition is even greater, as families, teachers, and students search for housing before the new school year. With many buyers on the hunt, new listings may sell quickly. But, not all homes sell fast; and the homes that do not give a special opportunity to those who are willing to consider them.
By considering a home that may not meet your criteria at first glance, you can position yourself in a better place than those who must have new or newly-renovated, higher priced homes. With the help of your Realtor, you can be first in line to see the homes that meet the physical requirements you have (for example, three bedrooms and two bathrooms with a yard for children and/or pets), but may be due for some cosmetic updates and upgrades.
Selecting a home that may not be exactly what you want may allow you to get into your new place faster and at lower cost. Plus, you will have the opportunity to custom-tailor your new home to your specific tastes.
Many buyers are looking for homes with the same criteria. So, homes that do not meet those criteria often become stagnant on the market. As they become stagnant, sellers often lower the prices.
And who doesn’t want to save a little money? If you buy a home that is not exactly what you, and the general public, want, the home may likely sell below current market value. If you want to buy a home at the lower end of your budget, you may be well served to consider homes other buyers have overlooked.
When you purchase a home that is at the low end of your budget, you are able to pay off your home faster, take a smaller loan from the bank, and/or put down a smaller down payment than you originally intended. Saving cash in these ways allows you to tackle projects in your home, or update your furnishings to fill the new space. This approach also allows you more discretionary money to spend as you wish or to cover unexpected expenses as they arise.
Also, for homes with reduced prices, sellers may be sufficiently motivated to consider offers that are below asking price. Your Realtor can help you decide what an appropriate offer would be, help you navigate the negotiations, and then complete the transaction.
If your house hunt is location-based – for school districts, proximity to work, or as a lifestyle choice – buying a less-than-perfect house may be particularly to your advantage.
In popular areas, homes have been known to receive offers the day they are listed. With the help of your Realtor, you can find a home that may be in your desired area, but isn’t getting as much attention as other move-in ready homes.
Often, buying in a very desirable area has a better return on investment than a home in a less desirable area which is updated with the latest trends, styles and materials. Think ten years down the road: buyers will likely still be interested in a great area, not in the best looks from a decade earlier. Investing in a property in an established, desirable neighborhood will pay off when you sell.
When you buy a home that isn’t “perfect” for you, you are giving yourself a unique opportunity. You have a blank canvas. Rather than taking an updated home that may not be your exact taste, you can create a home that is uniquely your own.
Instead of splurging on a renovated home, you can use the money you saved to make improvements and additions to your new home. Carefully done, the changes will not only make your home more enjoyable while you live there, but they will add long term value which will be recognized when you sell in years to come.
According to a field guide on remodeling from the National Association of Realtors, there are some projects that have a greater return on investment than others. Let’s look at the numbers:
As the study shows, there are some interior and exterior home projects that have a great return on investment for your home’s value. With the top projects being hardwood floor refinish (100% value added) and new roofing (105% value added), there are projects that are big and small that can turn your home into a place you will love, and one that will sell well in the future.
Even if you think a home is perfect for you right now, you may not feel the same way in a few years. By purchasing a home that has potential for growth and renovation in the years ahead, you can continue to create your best home over time. Remember, homes are not static; they are being improved or they are deteriorating. Maintaining and improving your home will not only enhance your quality of daily living, but it will also benefit you financially.
Your Realtor is here to help. By identifying homes that have great potential, showing you real estate trends, and keeping your best interests in mind, your real estate agent can help you make a wise, strategic purchase.
While a home purchase can sometimes be an emotional, romanticized journey, our agents know a good deal when we see one. Combining your wishes with our expert knowledge of the housing market in the greater Memphis area, we can find a home that can be truly perfect for you!
Contact us today to get started.