Local Buying Tips

GUIDE THROUGH THE HOME PROCESS 
 
 

Before you start your Lake Charles home search, it is important to pinpoint your needs and wants.  For instance, if you have children and/or pets, you will probably want a fenced yard with room for them to play.   Need at least three bedrooms? Can’t live without a shop? Will you lose your mind if you have to spend more than 15 minutes in your car on your daily commute to work?

It’s also  important to consider how long you may live in your Lake Charles home. If you’re newly married, you might not be concerned with a Lake Charles school district right now, but you could be in a few years. It’s important to think about your new home’s location just as carefully as you do about a house’s features.  In addition to considering the distance to work, you may also want to evaluate the convenience of shopping, schools and day-care.
 
Think about your lifestyle and your budget.   Making a list of what is important to you is helpful because when you start looking at houses, certain home features will catch your eye, leading you to want to compromise on your original goals. That Pool might be attractive, but if the home doesn’t meet your other needs, in the end, it’s not a good fit. Your list of priorities will keep you focused and help you narrow down the many choices on the market.
 

Questions to Ask When Buying a Lake Charles, LA Home

Consider these questions before writing an offer:

  • What are the neighborhood comps  of similar homes sold for in the past 3 months?
  • How long has the home been on the market?
  • Has the house had any price drops since it has been on the market?
  • Have there been any previous offers? What happened?
  • What are the local ratios for sold to (last) list-price ratio and sold to (original) list-price?
  • Is the seller offering any special incentives to the buyers such as closing costs or flooring allowance
  • What is the seller’s timing with moving?
  • Are there any special HOA assessments or  new taxes the new homeowner will have to make in the near future?

FIRST TIME HOME BUYERS:

This Forbes article Introduction to Buying a Home is a good source that will give First Time Home Buyers in Lake Charles and highlights an overview of the home buying process.

Buying a first home can be a new experience. Here are a few common and costly mistakes that novice home buyers make:

1. Ignoring the costs of having a low credit score. Lower-score borrowers pay thousands of dollars in increased interest rates over the life of the loan.

2. Do not make any major purchases!. Lenders continue to check credit scores right up until the time of closing. Too much shopping could cause the lender to take back the loan.  The lender may choose to do a pre-closing credit check or ask to verify your funds!  The New York Times just wrote an article about pre-closing credit checks,

3. Don’t skip your home inspection. Being surprised by the need for expensive repairs can be financially devastating.

4. No extra money for insurance. Insurance can be surprisingly pricey. Buyers who don’t budget for it can face a nasty surprise.

For more information on Understanding the Mortgage Process for First Time Home Buyers view this helpful mortgage overview.

MORE HELPFUL BUYER INFORMATION: