Aug. 10, 2018.
Buying a house is a daunting task, whether you’re moving for the first time or the fiftieth. Before you start looking for a house, however, there are a few things your real estate agent wants you to know. Take out your pen and paper, and remember these tips before becoming a house-hunter.
6 super-simple moving tips that will make your life easier
1. Know your real estate agent actually cares.
Yes, realtors work on commission, but they want you to find the home of your dreams as much as you do. A real estate agent wouldn’t put in the time and effort to show you homes that don’t match the important factors on your wishlist. It’s important to talk to your realtor about your budget, preferences, concerns, and most of all: your deal-breakers. While it might seem like you’re being picky, these are the important qualities that will help guide your agent to the house you’ve always wanted. Your realtor should be candid with you and tell you when your goals are too lofty.
- If you’re considering buying without an agent, read: 6 times buying without a realtor is a fail
- If you’re wondering why you need to use a realtor, read: 6 big reasons to use a realtor (plus a seller’s warning)
- If you need help finding a great realtor or are unhappy with your realtor, contact your loan officer here, and they can refer you to a Cornerstone Realtor Partner they’ve worked successfully with in the past.
In the end, a happy client will make your real estate agent feel like they’re on top of the world — they might even want to celebrate with you after the purchase is made.
2. It’s normal to get discouraged.
Not every house you see will be the perfect fit for you. Additionally, the “perfect” home for you might not be in your price range. While it’s unlikely that the first house you see will be the perfect match for you, continuing to view countless homes when you’re feeling down will get you nowhere. It’s normal to get down in the dumps when you’ve searched every home within a hundred mile radius; however, having too many options can be overwhelming. When you get into a house-hunting rut, take some time off from seeing houses to reassess what it is you truly need in a home. Just because the bathroom doesn’t come with a vanity mirror doesn’t mean you should count it out yet.
- If you need help negotiating an offer in a hot market, read: How to win a bidding war in a hot housing market — the easy way
- If you’re house-hunting with a child who has special needs, read: 11 ways to make a house accommodating to a child with special needs
- You can also check out the National Association of Realtors’ infographic: 5 Tips for Buying in a Tight Market
How much house can you afford? Find out fast when you get prequalified online.
3. Pack light.
Moving house is the perfect time to get rid of stuff in your home that you don’t need. Packing can take an overwhelming amount of time if you don’t hire professional movers or have a bus full of family members to help out. Additionally, the number of items in your home should never make you feel like you have to give up on a perfect space for you; don’t feel like you need to sacrifice the perfect home if it won’t fit your eight-person dinner table. Unless you hold gatherings with many people three times a week, you can always downsize or use this as an excuse to ditch older furniture. Focus on the items that are important to you and try to sell or donate the other items.
- If you’re ready to start packing, watch: VIDEO: Moving for Success Episode 2 – Pack hacks
- If you haven’t made your first-night kit yet, watch: VIDEO: Moving for Success Episode 6 – Have you made your first night kit?
- You can also use Bed Bath & Beyond’s Ultimate Moving Checklist to manage your move in eight weeks.
4. In fact, hold an estate sale.
Holding an estate sale can be fun for the whole family! Between advertising for the event, creating a fun space to showcase your items, and making a few bucks in the process, this can be a welcome distraction in a time of stress. Not only will you get rid of the materials you don’t need, your neighbors and family members can throw you a buck or two — this can even help finance your move. Anything that isn’t sold can always be donated to people in need.
Moving and selling resources:
- If you don’t know where to begin, read: Real Simple’s Ultimate Tag-Sale Guide
- To get the most bang for your buck, use: The Ultimate Estate Sale Pricing Guide by EstateSales.org
- To do it all online, read: Craigslist Seller’s Guide – Everything You Need to Know by the Financial Minimalist
5. Hire a mover.
When you’ve finally picked the house of your dreams, hiring a quality mover will make your job much easier. Instead of stressing over how you’ll manage to fit all your fragile goods in the back seat of your car, utilizing a professionally trained moving company will ensure you’re getting the best in customer service and reliability. Not only will your goods stay safe, it will give you the time to focus on the important aspects of your move — namely, eating any leftover food in your fridge before it goes bad.
- If you’re shopping for movers, read: Home Depot’s 20 Questions to Ask Your Moving Company
- If you have questions about price, check out: Angie’s List Movers & Moving Companies Guide
- If you’re wondering about laws and regulations, read: Your Rights and Responsibilities When You Move from the U.S. Department of Transportation
6. Transfer your utilities before you move.
There’s nothing worse than spending a hard day’s work moving into a new place only to find that your fridge can’t cool the few items of food you managed to bring with you. Before you make the big move, call your utilities to ensure you’ll have the proper functions up and running by the time you arrive. This can include internet, electric, gas, and especially garbage. Struggling to find local options after you move in will make the process seem rushed but taking the time to plan ahead might get you some deals as a first-time customer. Keep in mind that you should also change your mailing address as soon as you can!
Moving transfer resources:
- If you need help transferring utilities, read: How to Transfer Your Utilities When Moving by Moving.com
- If you need to locate your state utility provider, visit: Utility Services at USA.gov
- If you need to forward mail or change your address, visit: Forward Mail at USPS.com
Keep in mind that your real estate agent is there for you. Don’t be afraid to ask them any questions when you’re making one of the most important decisions of your life. They want you to succeed as much as you do.
Fred Craig owns Craig Van Lines, a provider of moving services in Virginia, Maryland, and Washington DC for four generations.
For educational purposes only. Please contact a qualified professional for specific guidance.
Sources are deemed reliable but not guaranteed.