You may think the pandemic is dashing your hopes of finding your dream home, but thanks to the age in which we live, just the opposite is true. From browsing listings to closing the deal, technology is easing house-hunting woes in amazing ways. These resources will help you navigate what’s available so you can put it to work in your search.
While it may be tempting to dive right into a housing search, it’s best to put together a financial picture first. That way, you can avoid the disappointment of finding “the one” and then discovering it’s out of your price range. At the same time, by figuring out what you can afford to spend, you can budget for improvements if you find a diamond in the rough.
- Get familiar with the ways the pandemic is affecting the housing market.
- Make some calculations to see how much house you can afford.
- Get preapproved for your mortgage. This will show buyers you are serious when you find a house you want.
Begin the Hunt
Searching for a home might sound daunting these days, but technology is paving the way. You can stay safe throughout your housing search, so lay a little groundwork for a good start.
- Create a list of features that are must-haves in your next home, as well as aspects that are on your wish list.
- Start an online search of homes within your price range. To give you an idea of what to expect, Redfin says the average selling price for residential properties in Alpharetta last month came in at $446K.
- Select a real estate agent in your desired location. Local agents often know of properties that are available that you might not otherwise find, and they can also guide you through the intricacies of healthy home viewing.
Tools and Techniques
Once you find some homes that pique your interest, your agent will be able to make arrangements for learning more about the property. From live virtual tours to video chats, the possibilities abound!
- Discussing your wants and needs with your real estate agent is eased with meeting apps.
- Virtual tours make “visiting” the house safe.
- Drones can provide otherwise inaccessible views of properties.
- If you’re having trouble visualizing your own things in the house, Architectural Digest notes you can use an app to help.
Finalizing Your Decision
Traditionally, everyone sat down together to finalize a home sale—the agents, buyer, and seller, and any other representatives involved with the process. However, these days, everything can be accomplished while respecting social distancing guidelines.
- Home inspections can still be completed safely and have their own set of guidelines.
- Keep in mind negotiations may be delayed if government offices, businesses, and other institutions are closed.
- Closings can be performed in a drive-up manner.
While the pandemic has altered so much of our life, it doesn’t mean life can’t go on. Prep your finances, look for your dream home, and when you find it, know that technology and your agent will be there to help make it all happen for you!