How to Avoid Homebuyer’s Remorse

A recent survey of homebuyers who purchased a home in 2021 and 2022 found that 72% had buyer’s remorse. Thirty-one percent paid over asking price, a median of $65,000; 36% made offers without seeing the home; and 43% made concessions to sellers such as waiving a home inspection.

If you’re planning to buy a home in 2023, how can you avoid buyer’s remorse syndrome?

Get prepared. Research neighborhoods and types of homes so you can find a home you’ll be happy with for years to come. You’ll need earnest money, a down payment, moving costs, utility deposits, unexpected repairs and replacements and more. Talk to your lender and get pre-approved for a loan, so you’ll know the ceiling of what you can comfortably afford. Be clear about your needs and dealbreakers so your Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices network professional can help you search for the right property.

Buy within your means. While you peruse homes online, shop within your budget. It does no good to look at homes you can’t afford or that aren’t the best fit for your household. If you need to consider fixer-uppers, make sure your mortgage loan can cover necessary improvements. Be aware of all the costs, including taxes, HOA fees, mortgage insurance, moving, etc.

Ask for seller concessions. Sellers in many markets are lowering their prices, agreeing to fix or replace expensive appliances or operating systems, paying the buyer’s closing costs, and other concessions. All you need to do is ask.


Sellers: Don’t Be Surprised by Repairs

Repairs or replacements that the homebuyer requires to be completed before closing on the sale of your home can blindside you if you’re not prepared. While any unforeseen expenses are an unwelcome surprise, you’ll still have to fix the problems or risk letting your buyer out of the contract and having to disclose the problems to future homebuyers.

Homebuyers have the right to have the home they’re buying professionally inspected. The purpose of the inspection is to inform the buyer as to the condition, age and likely lifespan of major systems and appliances in the home. As a contingency in the contract, the buyer has the choice to proceed with the contract or ask the seller for repairs or replacements. This is fair because many issues with a home can’t be seen with the naked eye. An inspection gives a rough idea of future expenditures; if there are more problems than the buyer is willing to allow, the transaction will be in jeopardy. The buyer can’t help but wonder what other problems may come to light about the home.

Your Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices network professional knows that the less the buyer finds wrong, the smoother the transaction will be. Before you put your home on the market, hire a licensed home inspector to alert you to unknown problems and repair or replace them so the buyer has no misgivings. You’ll also be able to ask a higher price for your home when it’s in pristine condition.


Selling an Out-of-state Home

Whether you’re selling an inherited property, a second home, or your own home after moving out of state, handling a long-distance property transaction can be challenging. But with good professional help, you can easily sell your home without leaving the comfort of where you live.

Ask your Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices network professional for a referral to a listing agent in the property’s area who has:

  1. Property management experience.
  2. Expertise with long-distance sellers.
  3. A strong network of homebuyers that they’ve brought to the table.

Many real estate agents don’t manage properties, but the ones who do can help you with many services that you’ll need. For example, they can help you prepare your home for sale before it hits the market. They have turnkey resources such as a detail-oriented cleaning crew, staging professionals, landscapers, housekeepers, handymen, roofers, painters, carpenters and mold and radon mediation teams, as needed. They can recommend a real estate attorney or closing agent who will facilitate the closing of your property electronically.

A listing agent who frequently works with buyers and is part of a large U.S. and overseas network such as Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices, is invaluable when it comes to marketing your home. They know what appeals to buyers in their market as well as to their network of professional contacts, past clients, and other sources of buyers.

Your long-distance agent should contact you often with buyer comments, renovation updates and market conditions so you know your property is in good hands.


Who Pays the Closing Costs?

Closing costs are fees paid to third parties to finalize a home purchase, explains, by both the buyer and the seller. Costs can vary widely depending on state requirements, the type of loan the buyer has, the fees that the lender charges, local customs and any arrangement negotiated between the buyer and seller.

Buyers typically pay the closing costs related to their mortgages such as loan origination fees, discount points, mortgage insurance and more. Buyers are also responsible for some third-party fees such as attorneys’ fees, appraisal fees, escrow fees and title search fees, prorated shares of property taxes and hazard insurance, and more. Buyers may be required by the lender to escrow monthly payments in advance for one to three months and property taxes and insurance for up to a year in advance.

Three days before closing, the lender provides a closing disclosure that outlines all fees and the “cash to close” required of the buyer at closing – typically as much as 3% to 6% of the home purchase price. Buyers have the option of paying cash, rolling closing costs into their mortgage, paying a higher interest rate of lender-paid fees and asking the seller to pay them in exchange for a higher purchase price.

Home sellers are usually responsible for the buyer’s title insurance and both the buyer’s and seller’s real estate commissions and/or fees. Seller’s fees can range between 6% to 8% of the home’s sale price and are taken out of the transaction proceeds.