Thursday, July 8, 2010

The Power of Visualization

If you can see it and you can dream it, you can do it! When looking for a home, it's important to know what you want and focus on that. Be pretty specific, but also be open minded and prepared to make some compromises. In other words, know what criteria is MOST important to you- features you don't want to compromise on- and stick with those, compromise on "not-so important" items. For example, you may love bungalow style architecture, but school district and condition/price may be most important. So be willing to look at other homes with different architectural styles- so long as they meet your "must-have" criteria.

Maybe you really want a nice big kitchen with gas cooking and granite countertops. Will you be willing to look at homes with nice big kitchens with electric cooking and composite countertops?? Maybe you really want a two car garage, but want to live intown and can't find a home with a two car garage in an intown neighborhood for your price. Would you prefer to compromise and eliminate the garage or move to a different area/neighborhood? It will help your real estate agent to know the specifics of what is most important to you in finding the right home and not wasting time. It will also help you, if you begin the home search process if you have a clear understanding of what you can and can't afford and what you can and can't live without.

Also, be realistic in what you want vs. what you can afford. The first step in the home buying process is to get with a reputable lender to get "pre-approved" for a mortgage. This will set the monetary parameters for you so you don't look at homes that you can't have. That's just torture to look at homes just out of your reach.. those are the ones you'll like most and can't have, so then the homes you can afford seem like a let-down by comparison. Also, in order to make a serious offer on a home, the seller will want to know that you have already pre-qualified for a loan and may not take a contingency for you to be able to qualify for the mortgage.

Once you've been pre-approved and know what you can spend, decide your price parameters. Don't forget to budget for improvements like new paint, window treatments, refrigerator/washer/dryer (if not included in the home purchase), and new furniture. Realistically, you may need to buy a bunch of stuff for your fab new pad.

I believe in the power of a vision board to help you visualize your dream. Within your realistic parameters, find pictures of homes that you like and pin up on a board where you see it every day. It's amazing how that works... when you see it in your mind, you can acheive it!

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