How to Buy a St. Petersburg Home in One Day!
How to Buy a St. Petersburg Home in One Day!
MUST you buy a home in one day? Of course not…but if you want to make the most of a one day house hunt and purchase, it can be done.
Occasionally, we have a buyer client fly into Tampa in the morning, select a St. Pete Home to purchase and fly home that evening. It is usually not the first choice for home buyers, but it may be done if needed.
If you like the idea of being ready to buy a home quickly, here is how you do it…
RULE #1 Choose the right Buyers Agent for St. Petersburg.
I know that sounds like self promotion, but it's a fact that Florida agents all have different duties. So if you don’t pick a St. Petersburg Buyers Agent that will always have your back, this house hunt may not be easy…and it should be. You may find yourself on your own, with not much help.
Very few agents understand the duties of good buyer representation and some traditional agents are not familiar with the real estate market outside of their “farm area”. “Farm Areas” are usually close to the agent's office or close to where they live, but it is not a real farm that produces crops or raises farm animals.
To have a “farm area” the agent selects a community to do some heavy marketing so that they can plant their “seeds” for future business from the “farm”.
Most traditional agents represent sellers and have a certain “farm area” that they focus on…which can limit their knowledge of other areas.
Don’t be afraid to ask any potential Buyers Agent in St. Petersburg the hard questions because your success in home buying depends on it. Ask these:
- What percentage of your business is representing only home buyers?
- What counties do you work in? What is the difference between County A, County B or County D?
- What will be your agency relationship with me and please explain what that means?
- What advantage will I have working with you?
- What happens if I want to buy a home listed with your company? Whose side will you LEGALLY be on?
- Do you read all contracts and understand them?...including new construction builder contracts?
- What will you add to the contract to protect me?
RULE # 2 Prepare by doing your Real Estate Homework
The more you know about your own wants, needs and desires, the easier it will be. Will this purchase be a primary residence, a rental property or an occasional vacation property? Are you paying cash or financing?
What about your budget? Is there a maximum drop dead price or does the cost just depend. Even so, you should know your numbers within your comfort level. We always like to stay within a homebuyer's comfort level.
What is the goal of buying the property? Who else will be involved in the home buying process and do you all agree on the same criteria? Sort this out first.
Go online to learn more about the city you are considering and have your buyer agent set you up on a customized home search for your criteria and target area. That should not be a problem for a competent St. Petersburg Buyers Agent to do that for you.
That will give you daily properties to review so that you have a feel for what is available in your budget. That will help and be a great advantage as you focus on what you like.
It is never good when a buyer comes to town and has not already perused properties in their budget, because they may expect more house than the wallet allows or the market bears.
RULE # 3 Be Realistic…and stay flexible
There are no miracles when Buying Real Estate in St. Petersburg; as Homes are priced for:
- Curb appeal
Your needs and budget will dictate what properties we will see, so your criteria needs to stay flexible. A good Buyers Agent will research, evaluate, and be prepared to show you the best of what is available and also whatever you have on your list that you do wish to see.
If you follow the rules above, your house hunting will be fruitful and you should find some properties of interest.
What If I don’t find any home that I like enough to buy? In that case, go back to the drawing board and start over to re- look at the St. Petersburg housing inventory. Maybe you are searching for something that either does not exist…or is extra hard to find…or maybe you just overlooked it.
Examples of Hard to find Home Criteria
- A budget that does not allow for a “move in ready” or upgraded house.
- Home that already has the same decorating taste you have.
- A brand new home in an old established neighborhood.
- An acreage property in a city known for small lots.
- A particular style home in the top school district.
- A house with a (hard to find) guest house.
#4 How to adjust your St. Petersburg Home Search with input from your St. Pete Buyers Agent:
Consider a smaller home, an older home, a home that is outside your area of interest, a two- story instead of one, a house that needs some work, … or simply bump your price up.
I remember a client that wanted nothing else except to buy a house on the waterfront. I worked with them for 9 months to view every waterfront home that came on the market. Out of desperation, to stay close to their moving time frame, they asked to see the house next door that just came on the market.
This home was smaller than their original criteria and the ONLY house I showed them that was NOT on water. Buyers loved this house and bought it… it was exactly what they originally claimed they did not want.
It is good to have a flexible criteria and be open to consider homes that don’t exactly conform to what is on the list.
So what if you know what you want to buy and how much you are willing to spend but just have not found it yet? It is not a problem for you to wait for that to come up. We will never pressure you to buy... However, keep in mind that if you are looking for that diamond, other people may be also…which means that bidding could be fiercely competitive.
I am a real believer in “supply and demand” in any Real Estate Market. If there is a short supply, there may be a higher demand and probably a higher price tag.
#5 Consider buying sight unseen…we check/evaluate the house without you.
We are pro’s at helping buyers with that. That means we will put you on an auto-mailer to receive target properties by email that are close to your criteria. If it looks good, we will go visit the property and if it is worth making an offer on it we will write up for you and negotiate the most favorable terms…for you. You will not see the property in person, until later.
We never hide any issues and gather all reasonable information for you. We provide the good, the bad and the ugly so you are aware of the nuances of the property. You will never be pressured into buying, as it is always your decision.
We always recommend having an inspection contingency in the contract so that you may withdraw from the contract if inspections are not satisfactory to you.
As a unique Buyer Brokerage Office, our focus is only for the Home buyers' best interest and never the seller. Our commission is paid no differently than any other office in Florida; it is paid by the listing office or seller at closing. Call us to discover the difference. 727-202-9130.