3 “What If’s” That Could Stop You From Buying a Home

Buying a home is a serious investment, which is why many would-be buyers get caught up in all the “what ifs” of things that could go wrong, and ultimately let those fears stop them from buying their dream home.

But the truth is, most “what ifs” have a logical explanation and don’t have to derail your dreams of homeownership.

So, what are some of the concerns keeping people from buying in today’s market? A recent article from realtor.com addressed some of the most common “what if” questions buyers have when going through the home buying process, including:

  • What if I buy now and home prices drop? Many people feel that home prices in today’s market are high. As such, one of the biggest fears many potential buyers have is that they’ll buy a home, only for prices to drop shortly after. But while there are fluctuations in the market, over the long term prices tend to go up, so as long as you don’t sell your home during a period of time when the price is below what you paid for it, you won’t lose on your investment.
  • What if I buy now and mortgage rates fall? In addition to high home prices, mortgage rates are also currently high, which has many buyers fearful that they’ll get locked into a high mortgage rate, only for rates to fall after their home purchase. But the good news is if mortgage rates were to come down at some point in the future, lowering your rate by refinancing could be an option.
  • What if I buy a home, but then lose my job or suffer a financial setback? Another fear buyers have is that they’ll buy a home, but then run into a situation where they can no longer afford their property, due to a job loss or medical issue. Ideally, you’ll have savings to carry you through any financial hard times, but even if you don’t, you can talk to your lender. If you’re honest and communicative with your lender about your financial hardship, they’ll likely be willing to work with you, because lenders typically would typically prefer to work with you, than go through the foreclosure process.

The Places in Your Home You’re Most Likely to Find Rodents—and How to Keep Them Out

Rodents can squeeze through extremely small spaces — as small as ¼ inch wide — so if your property has any vulnerable areas (like a small crack), rodents can squeeze their way into your home.

recent article from realtor.com outlined some of the places in and on your property where rodents may try to make themselves at home and, more importantly, how to prevent them from doing so, including:

  • Garage. If your garage door isn’t properly sealed, it can be easy for rodents to squeeze inside and set up shop in a corner or storage box. To keep rodents out, test your door seal. During the daylight hours, turn off all the lights and look at the garage door; if any sunlight peeks through, it’s time to reseal.
  • Kitchen pantry. Your pantry is full of food, which is why it tends to attract rodents. To keep rodents out, make sure to seal up any cracks, holes, or entryways into your pantry. Consider keeping food in tightly-sealed containers, which can deter rodents. For example, instead of keeping cereal in a cardboard box—which rodents can easily chew through—consider putting it in a sealed plastic container.
  • Attic. Rodents are also attracted to attics, which are full of nesting materials like insulation. Make sure to find and close any entry points to your attic; not only can rodents wreak havoc on your insulation, but they can also chew through electrical wiring, which could present a fire hazard.

3 tips for Low Home Appraisal? Here’s How Buyers Can Navigate the Situation

You found the perfect home. You made an offer, and it was accepted. Everything is going smoothly until you get back the appraisal and it was much lower than expected.

As a buyer, what can you do in this situation?

recent article from realtor.com outlined the different ways buyers can move forward if they find themselves dealing with a low appraisal, including:

  • Get a second opinion. If you think the first appraisal was inaccurate — and incorrectly low — you can opt to order a second appraisal. Just keep in mind that you’ll be on the hook for the fee, and there’s no guarantee that there will be a different result.
  • Negotiate with the sellers. If the home you’re planning to buy was appraised for less than what you agreed to pay for it, another option is to negotiate with the sellers. A low appraisal might indicate that their house might not appraise for enough even if they put their house back on the market and receive an offer from another buyer. The seller may be willing to work with you on the price, rather than risk having the same thing occur a second time.
  • Walk away. If you’re buying a home with a mortgage, the lender will only loan you as much as the home’s appraised value. So, if the home appraises low — and the sellers won’t budge on the price — you might have no option other than to walk away from the purchase.