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Buying a Home? Here are 5 Things to do Before you Start Looking

I have received several calls from people who are planning to buy their first home over the summer.  I tend to get the same questions, so I thought I’d put together a list of things to do before looking for a home.

1.  Get pre-approved.

I can’t stress this enough.  People tend to drag their feet getting pre-approved.  The reason why it is so important isn’t just so you know what amount of money you are approved for.  You also need to know how much you might need to save up for a down-payment.  Cleaning up any credit blemishes is another reason to get pre-approved as soon as possible.

2.  Put together a plan for how you will save up the money for that down-payment.

The amount needed for a down-payment can be quite a chunk of money.  Another thing that needs to be considered is extra money for unexpected expenses.  If you are getting a foreclosed property or if you want to update the home you have chosen, having extra money set aside is a must.

3.  Decide where you would like to live.

There are a million reason’s why a particular city is picked out.  The homes might be more affordable, you love the night life of the area, or maybe the area is close to friends and family.  What ever your reason, it is much easier to find a home you will love when you have an area picked out as being perfect for your personal needs.

4.  Start shopping taxes.

This really goes hand in hand with picking the area you will live in.  It’s amazing how two cities next to each other can have such a wide range in what is taxed on homeowners.  You should be aware of how much you can afford and how the taxes will play into your decision.  Maybe the taxes are low and you will be able to afford more home.  On the other hand, maybe the taxes are incredibly high, but the lure of the location is enough for you to go for the smaller home because you love the neighborhood you are choosing.

5.  Get familiar with what you want in a home and how realistic it might be.

At Real Estate One, we have a free program where we send emails to the customer which show homes for sale.  The homes the customer views take into account the criteria that is important to the customer.  Let’s say the customer names 3 cities as possible choices.  The home should have 3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, a garage and 1400 sq ft minimum.  The criteria will be set and the customer will get email updates with pictures and information on homes that fit those needs.

It’s a great program in that it gives the potential homeowner a peek at what is available with the criteria they have chosen.  If the choices are sparse, the customer can tweak their criteria and see if they fare better with what is available.

If you are interested in discussing how you can get into a new home or maybe you have a home you need to sell, give me a call.  I would be happy to help you set up a plan to get ready to move and then find the home of your dreams.

Wendy McCance
Real Estate Agent
Real Estate One
26236 Woodward Ave
Royal Oak, MI 48067 
Direct: 248-414-1248 ext. 119
wendymccance@realestateone.com
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Posted by on January 8, 2013 in advice, housing, how to

 

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Failure is a Stepping-Stone Towards Success

I wrote this article for my other blog, Searching for the Happiness.  I am sharing it on this blog because the advice is really quite universal.  When you feel that you have pushed yourself as far as you can go, remember the advice below. 🙂

Have you ever had a moment where you feel like you are at a crossroad and somehow the right words fall into your lap?  I tend to be the type of person who works hard towards a goal, see progress, then see a lack of any more forward movement and take that opportunity to stop, regroup and reflect.  I have found that if I quiet my mind and pay attention to what is around me, the answers or at least the right motivational words tend to appear.

This last few months have been quite a whirlwind of activity.  My busy schedule has suddenly lifted and I am left with that feeling of what should I do next?  I have begun to cherish these moments since I have learned how to make the most of them.  Downtime is a time to refresh your mind and create some new ways to go after your goals.

I tend to take time to organize the house and organize my work files.  I will do some reading and research to center myself again towards what I want to achieve.  I find that if I can’t see clutter around me, and if my mind is clear and focused, I can get back on track and make some more progress towards what I am focused on.

I happened to read an article that talked about how to look at failure.  Personally, I found the idea of looking at failure as something not to dread, but instead to celebrate as fascinating.

Everyone has had goals they have faced where you worked hard, picked up steam and then just sort of hit a plateau.  You no longer saw any more movement towards your goal.  What you had been working so hard at became stagnant.  This is the moment where many people give up.  They don’t know what else they can do.  Since they seem to be suddenly at the peak of their abilities, they quit.  They are bored and no longer inspired to continue to work at something that seems to have gone as far as it could possibly go.  Sound familiar?

This is the moment that you should be feeling goosebumps of excitement not disappointment and failure.  When you reach that point where you feel like you have gone the distance, you are truly on the brink of a major event.  If you have patience and faith in yourself, the world will open up with some amazing possibilities.  You will eventually reach your goal if you just stick with it.

I have read so many stories of people on the brink of quitting and the amazing turnaround that happened to them.  They couldn’t see what was in store for them, but were so grateful that they stuck it out a bit longer.

The best story of this phenomenon that I read recently was of Gabby Douglas, the olympic gymnast.  She had been away from her family for a year training with a host family.  She was bored and homesick.  She called her mom asking to come home.  She figured she would get a job at the local fast food joint and train as a runner.  Her mom and the host family were able to convince her to stick with gymnastics.  They supported her and got her back on track.  She ended up with incredible success at the olympic games (to say the least).  Who would have guessed she almost blew such an incredible achievement?

So, here I am in the midst of pushing on towards my goals.  As I have taken a moment to reflect on where I have been and where I am heading, I keep finding these articles full of inspiring tales that have motivated me to stay focused and on track.  I hope that these tidbits of wisdom help you as well to accomplish all that you are aiming for in your own life.

*If you would like to read more posts full of inspiration, please follow the link below.

http://searchingforthehappiness.wordpress.com

 
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Posted by on December 4, 2012 in advice, career planning, self-help

 

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