To everything there is a season — and while people certainly shop homes for sale all year round, springtime can be a special kind of rush for hopeful homebuyers. The snow is freshly melted, summer vacation is yet to begin, and it’s really the perfect time to shop around and find your dream home.
Unfortunately, it’s possible that everyone else has the same idea. All at the same time. Talk about a seller’s market!
If you’re planning to participate in spring homebuying season this year, you’re already on the right track: reading up about how to prepare for the project. But there are a few action items you likely want to add to your list to ensure your best possible chances at putting in a winning offer on that house you just have to have.
Here are some ways to get ahead — and go into spring homebuying season ready to rumble.
1. Get pre-qualified as soon as possible.
Getting pre-qualified by a mortgage lender as early as possible is an essential first step any time of year you might be home shopping — but particularly during the spring homebuying season. Along with showing buyers you mean business (and giving you the option to make an offer right away), having a pre-qualification letter in hand will also help you narrow your new home search by showing you how much home you may be able to afford.
Once you know how far your mortgage may extend, you’ll be able to navigate the housing market with a lot more confidence and ease, attending open houses and showings in your price range. Keep in mind that the list price is just the start when it comes to the expenses of homeownership: you’ll also need to keep interest rates in mind, along with closing costs, property taxes, repairs and maintenance, and other inevitable costs.
And if you weren’t pre-qualified for as much as you’d hoped you’d be, take heart: now’s the time to work on your credit score, debt-to-income ratio, and other financial markers — or seek out potential donors for gift funds for your down payment.
2. Choose a real estate agent you trust.
When shopping in a competitive real estate market, your real estate agent or REALTOR is your friend: the person who will help you survive the bidding war (or, more likely, multiple bidding wars) it’ll take for you to make it through the homebuying process and finally close on your dream house. And even if you luck into a successful offer right away, your agent will still assist you through your home shopping journey. Chances are good you’ll spend a lot of time together, so it’s worth finding someone you trust and like.
Additionally, the right real estate agent can help you cut through the dross like a knife: they’ll know exactly which neighborhoods have the hidden gems, what red flags to watch out for while you’re waltzing through those open houses, and more. Your agent can also draw up a CMA, or comparative market analysis, for you, so you can get a better insight into how much the homes you’re looking at are actually worth compared to their asking price — an important step for making a smart financial decision.
3. Spring homebuying season can be competitive — so stay strong!
Although house shopping can certainly be a fun project, it can also be overwhelming… and putting in multiple offers only to be beaten out can be downright emotionally draining. A large part of the battle is simply steeling yourself for the inevitable ups and downs. You’re playing the long game, so keep your chin up!
Ready to get a home loan pre-qualification for spring homebuying season? Quontic offers a wide range of mortgage loan programs, including conventional loans, FHA mortgages and VA mortgages as well as our unique Community Development Loan, or CDL, which is specifically built for borrowers with irregular or non-traditional income. No matter where you are on your home purchase journey, whether you’re a first-time homebuyer or a homeowner hoping to refinance, we’re here to help — so reach out to one of our mortgage specialists today if you have questions!
Quontic Bank is not affiliated with or acting on behalf of or at the direction of Federal Housing Authority (FHA) or any government agency or government sponsored entity. All lending products are subject to approval. Rates, program terms & conditions are subject to change without notice. Not all products are available in all states or for all amounts. This does not represent an offer to enter into a loan agreement. Other requirements, restrictions & limitations apply. Information is accurate as of March 2, 2022 & is subject to change without notice.