Rejuvenated Real Estate
From May baskets and Cinco de Mayo to Mother’s Day and Memorial Day, the month of May has a lot going on. It also happens to be one of the best months to buy a house. Beautiful spring weather—especially before the summer heat and humidity hits in full force—means it’s a better time for house hunting. And of course, new listings begin to pop up like Texas wildflowers. The birds are chirping, the leaves and grass are green, and sunshine streams in through the windows of your potential new home—or your current one—showcasing them in their best light.
In addition to great weather and a general sense of anticipation and elation as summer draws near, May is an ideal month do a home deal from a timing perspective. A May sale typically means a June closing, which provides ample time to move and smoothly transition yourself and your children into a new neighborhood and school system. It also gives you the freedom to settle in and then enjoy a family vacation before summer is over. After all, moving is hard work. A little well-earned rest and relaxation afterward will help you reenergize as well as focus on family instead of moving boxes and unpacking. Or perhaps you want to do a little renovation on your new home before summer wanes—maybe add an outdoor kitchen to the pool area, create a spa-like master bath, or add a home theatre.
Additionally, there’s usually more inventory for everyone to choose from in May, which means it’s more likely that whoever is looking is going to find what they want. If you’re buying, you may encounter some extra competition when it comes to bidding, but you’ll have more choices, and extra bids aren’t so bad if you’re selling. Waiting too long— especially if you have a family and need to get kids into a new school—can put you at risk of falling into a tight time constraint, so everyone is extra motivated to get deals done quickly this time of year too.
Whether you’re ready to buy your first house or condo, upsizing, downsizing, or wish to change school systems, the perfect time to carefully choose a real estate agent and start looking for your new home is now. And if you’re interested in selling but don’t have your home on the market yet, list it now and take advantage of a healthy and active scene.
PRICE TO SELL
If you’re selling, don’t be tempted to overprice, even in a strong real estate market. Your goal should be to create as much interest as possible from the buying community. At the right price your home may even get multiple bids, some of which may be over the asking price. Ask your agent for an up-to-date comparative market analysis, then work with them to develop a winning pricing strategy.
SET YOUR EMOTIONS ASIDE
If you’re ready to change homes and you fall in love with one then negotiate based on emotions, you may end up making financial decisions you could later regret. It’s going to be your home, but it’s also an investment. Stay calm, balanced, and be wise about your decision.
CHECK OUT THE NEIGHBORHOOD 24/7
Drive by houses you’re interested in and around the neighborhood in the morning, at noon, and during the evening, before you make an offer. Find out how far it is to the nearest grocery store, healthcare services, shopping, highway access points, and parks. Look at what the traffic by the house is like. Even if you don’t have kids, research the schools. Being in well regarded school districts can greatly impact the price.
SPLIT THE DIFFERENCE
With more people working at home and welcoming guests, an area for a home office that doubles as a guest room can be in high demand. Clean out that spare room and stage it multifunctionally for prospective buyers who can feel like they’re getting two for the price of one.
GET PRE-APPROVED VERSUS PRE- QUALIFIED Getting pre-qualified involves suppling a bank or lender with your overall financial picture, including debt, income, and assets. After evaluating this information, a lender can give you an idea of the size of the mortgage for which you qualify. Getting pre-approved for a mortgage takes it to the next level. It gives
you an advantage when dealing with a potential seller, as he or she will know you’re one step closer to obtaining an actual mortgage. With pre-approval, you will receive a conditional commitment in writing for an exact loan amount, allowing you to look for a home at or below that price level.
MAKE IT LIGHT AND BRIGHT
After location, good light is the one thing every buyer says they want in a home. Clean the windows, take down the drapes, change the lampshades or lighting, increase the wattage of your light bulbs, and prune the bushes outside to let in sunshine.