- Make a list of major and minor repairs needed pretending you are a buyer for your home. Fix the ones you can like loose faucets, leaky plumbing or roof and re-caulking the bathrooms.
- Create a budget what funds are available to do your projects and repairs.
- Find a local Realtor who is familiar with your neighborhood with enough knowledge of the present demand. A Realtor can give you tips on what projects and repairs are worthwhile to do based on how soon you have to sell and what budget you have.
- Get a home, termite and roof inspection. This will give you an idea what to prioritize.
- Find out what is the recent sales price of homes like yours have sold. Remember, not all major upgrades pays off when you sell.
- Talk to all your lenders and ask how much is your loan “pay off” on all your loans against the house. Did you have your loan modified?
- Start decluttering your home. Donate, throw away, or sell whatever you will not take to your new place. This will simplify when you are moving and will save you on your moving expense. Not to count, being overwhelmed!
- Research where you will move. Your Realtor can give you resources where you can best leverage your proceeds like moving to a location that may use Prop. 60/90 and carry over your low property tax rate or the advantage of the Reverse Mortgage if you are over 62 years old.
- Consider hiring a professional stager who can bring newer, updated furnishings to give it a fresh look.
- Start packing and organize your schedule for easy showings.
Maria is a registered nurse who with a 9 year old son. Her Mom and Dad lives with her on a 2 bedroom apartment in Fremont renting for $2,100/month. She was given a letter before her lease expired to an increase to $2,600.
With her as the sole income earner, she only had $40,000 budget to purchase a 2 bedroom condo. After making several offers, she realized that her budget of $350,000 we could not find a decent location close to her job and school. She worked full time form 7-7pm and it was very hard to preview homes with her.
We finally made an offer on a 2 Bedroom condo that I found was just getting back in the market because the buyer was turned down few days prior close of escrow. The lender conditioned a $6,500 termite and repairs the buyer fall short on the pre-approved loan.
After notifying Maria and discussing a strategy, we were able to get our offer accepted. However, because we had to use an FHA loan, the lender requires all Section 1 repairs cleared. We reviewed the existing termite report and requested the inspector to come out and show us the infested areas. This showed that most of the repairs were from the exterior of the condo unit which is the responsibility of the Home Owners Association.
After further investigation and interviews with a couple of newly moved owners, we were able to find out that the whole building had a Section 1 repair due for the next scheduled maintenance. Researching and finding out the Property Management and HOA Officers, we were able to get an acknowledgement for the HOA that these Section 1 repairs were their responsibility. Maria was able to free that repair budget saving her $4000.
Because she was a first time home buyer, the senior loan officer was able to qualify her for a grant to cover $7000 of her closing costs.
Altogether, Maria was able to save $9,500 and found the condo unit close to her work, school and stores Mom and Dad can walk to. Plus they had an underground 2 car garage space for $495,000 with market value when we closed at $520,000.
Maria is a Registered Nurse with a 9 year old son who was renting and working in Fremont. Her Mom and Dad lives with her too. Her husband is also an Overseas Filipino Worker (OFW) but in Singapore.
She was referred to me as a First Time Home Buyer by her nurse associate and past client. Her lease contract was expiring and renewal for another year will increase $500 more.
She wanted to have a 2-3 Bedroom condo but she has only $45,000 budget. The value of condominiums in Fremont within her desired area range from $48K0-$550K. After several multiple offers and lost, we made an offer on a 2 bedroom unit next to her apartment . There were 9 offers,. Again, we did not get the offer. Two weeks later, the unit went back on the market because the buyer backout due to $6,500 termite work!
We made a lower but “As Is” offer of $492,000. After several negotiations with the Home Owners Association and the lender underwriter, her share of termite work decreased to $2200. The HOA property management agreed to cover the exterior repairs of $4200.
Within 30 days, Maria closed on the sale with a lower cash out from her budget. The lender who worked diligently found a First Time Home Buying Program that got her additional $9000 rebate that was applied towards her closing cost on a FHA Loan.
First Time Home Buyers can qualify for different incentives, rebates and grants. It takes a team of professionals who has the expertise and time willing to work with you.
Maria saved $4200 termite work, saved $13000 less than her original offer, and $9000 lender rebate, a total of $26,200 savings working with my team.
If you want to find out what Programs are available for you, give me a call at (510) 815-8040 for a private consultation.
Real Estate Broker/Consultant