Save Money 10 Unusual Ways - Really?
Yes, even more. There are many, and it pays YOU to know them. This is how I work, it's why people work with me again and again.
I’m here to save you money, and to make you money. Just read my reviews--it's my specialty. And I won't bore you with obvious advice, like, “buy a house, you’ll make money when the value goes up” or “you can write off your mortgage interest”. C’mon, most everyone knows those and you don’t need me for that.
Instead, I'll share other tips that few agents pass along. First tip: agents have an amazing tool to access the seller/agent’s ‘Private Remark’ instructions to other agents. You can’t find this info anywhere on the internet. “Seller moving cross-country, allow time for offer responses”. Comments like that can be turned into money for you! Here are 10+ ways to use that info, plus other insights, to come out ahead:
What kinds of houses have extra buyer fees?
Call the Seller’s Agent to get a Good Deal? Never. Why?
Don’t pay a dime for a Buyer’s Agent to help you!
What's in a house you could get for free?
Offer a price based on recent sales
Look for conditions that could kill a loan
After the inspection….what repairs can you require seller do?
Don’t miss a paperwork timeline
Speaking of loans, how do you get the best OVERALL loan prices?
Don’t pay an Appraiser go back to verify repairs
1. What kinds of houses have extra buyer fees? You’ll find many distressed homes have these fees (short sales, foreclosures, auctions, etc) have extra fees like ‘Carve-Outs’ ($15000-$17,500), ‘Buyer Fee’s at Closing’ (Hubzu foreclosure buyers pay 4.5% + $300 fees—$11,650 on a $250K house), and ‘Short Sale Negotiator’ fees ($2500+). How can you tell if a house you see online has extra fees? You can't. The info is deliberately hidden--it's ONLY in the "Private Remarks" of a listing. But that's why I'm here. Just ask. I look up houses all day long and will tell you ASAP about any extra buyer fees. Make/Save: hard to say…up to $17,500 on some? Depends on the house.
2. Call the Seller’s Agent to get a Good Deal? Never. Why? A seller’s agent has one job—getting a seller the most money for home. Yet that seller can get mad when their agent tries to ‘sell them’ on taking a low offers. They think “is my agent really trying to get me top dollar?” Next thing you know, the seller has fired their agent and found another one. That's why seller’s agents can resist discussing your price with their client. Use a Buyer’s Agent instead. We’re used to getting homes for less than list price when possible. And no buyer has ever fired me for that. Make/Save: $1000’s
3. Don’t pay a dime for a Buyer’s Agent to help you! Some agents charge a Buyer Fee. I think that’s unnecessary (the seller’s agent shares his/her commission with the buyer’s agent). You don’t have to participate in double-payment to an agent. Find another one. Make/Save: $1000+
4. What's in a house you can get for free? (tools, furnishings, building supplies, etc). If the sellers are downsizing or moving across country, do they want that leather sectional? Or the pool table, or the washer/dryer? It PAYS you to know when to ask, and what to ask for. Make/Save: up to $2000, but do it in the offer (never verbally or it might not happen).
5. Offer a price based on recent sales. I often run full comp analyses for buyers (like an appraiser does). Why? Because if the home can’t appraise at the price you offered, your loan can’t close and you’ve just spent $400 (inspection) and $600+ for the failed appraisal. Not good. Make/Save: $1000+
6. Look for conditions that could kill a loan. And I don't mean your loan (you may not even need one), but for the majority of buyers who do need a loan? If the house conditions would kill their loan, you're in an excellent position. The seller will not even look at those buyer's offers. BUT, if you do see rough conditions, and you will be using a loan, don’t offer pay for an inspection. Your loan may not work for that house. Why? Your loan type sets what kinds of houses you could buy. Low down-payment loans need houses in pretty good condition. Problem is, a lot of homeowners would love someone to have an inspection—not so they’ll fix things, but so they know what’s going to be asked for repairs. If you pay for an inspection, then decide to walk away due to loan-killing conditions the sellers won’t fix? Your loss. Don’t do it. Trust your agent when conditions are spotted that aren’t cheap & easy to fix. Make/Save: $400+
7. After the inspection….what repairs can you require seller do? Besides loan-killing conditions? Ask yourself this: how badly does the seller want your offer to succeed? If you offered top-dollar, the seller will do a lot, especially if there were no other offers. But if there were 5 other close offers and you were the lucky winner? You better plan on doing some repairs yourself. Make/Save: $2000+ if you’re the only offer—but don’t lose a HOT house over minor repairs!
8. Don’t miss a paperwork timeline. Maybe you’re a paperwork geek, so you’d know this anyway: don’t miss specific deadlines. There are mandatory dates for depositing earnest money, inspections, responses to inspections, appraisal conditions (repairs called for by appraiser)…it goes on. Make requests and replies on time—or you could be buying a house as-is (opposite of your intentions). You could even lose your earnest money. Make/Save: $1000+
9. Speaking of loans, how do you get the best loan prices? There’s more to your loan than the interest rate! Lenders charge you for doc fees, underwriting fees, processing fees, etc. This is an easy tip: get a 2nd loan estimate. Even a 3rd. Remember—it’s not a credit hit if you’re shopping for a mortgage. It’s common sense. Everyone should do it. Save money if can. Make/Save: $500+
10. Don’t pay an Appraiser go back to verify repairs. They’ll charge you $100 to go back and verify smoke detectors/carbon monoxide detectors were changed. Seriously! Don’t let that happen. The sellers could have done it beforehand, or they could let you do it if a vacant house. This is an easy way to keep your money in your pocket. Make/Save: $100
11. Bonus! Thank you for reading. If you’ve gotten this far, I believe you’re serious and grounded about buying a home. I’d be honored to help you. I’ll even offer you a bonus….I’ll pay for your home inspection! There are a few rules…I have to write your offer, I’ll only credit you for one inspection, and the sale has to actually close escrow (house becomes yours). Simple. And it’s in writing. Click here if you’d like to Make/Save: $400+!
1235 SE Morrison St, Suite 202, Portland, OR 97214
16219 SE 12th St, Suite 200, Vancouver, WA 98684