When making a substantial financial commitment like buying a home, it’s only reasonable to do it in person. But with the advent of the COVID-19 pandemic, this may not always be the best option. Buying a house remotely has now become a reasonably safe way to go for home buyers.
But the remote home buying process is complicated. There are several things you need to do so as to avoid getting the wrong house.
Fortunately, you don’t have to worry as we’ve got you covered. In this article, we provide tips for buying a new home remotely. Come along with us as we explain these tips.
How to buy a house remotely
1. Hire a competent real estate agent
Like the traditional home-buying process, the first step to buying a house remotely is hiring an agent. But since you may not be able to assess them face-to-face, you need to be extra careful when selecting them.
For example, you must be sure that you’re choosing an agent familiar with the local market. This familiarity will make it easier for them to get information about houses on sale around that area.
Once you get an agent, share your home wish list with them. Tell them the size, number of bedrooms, location, and must-haves of your dream house.
After this, it becomes your agent’s job to find the house. During this period, they will attend home tours and showings on your behalf. They’ll also provide recommendations and tips that will put you ahead of other buyers in the remote purchase transaction.
2. Ask questions
Since this is your first time buying a house remotely, it’s expected that you’ll have many questions. Hence, you shouldn’t be shy to ask your real estate agent these questions when they come to mind.
Hesitating to ask questions can cost you a lot in the long run. You may end up buying a house you don’t like or miss out on your dream house.
In order to not forget what you want to ask, we suggest you write down all your questions. Some of the best questions to ask are the ones not stated on the listing website. They include:
- How is traffic in the area?
- Is the environment secured and ideal for raising kids?
- What kind of people are in the neighborhood?
- Are there any registered sex offenders living nearby?
For each of these, you will also want to do your own research to verify if what the agent says is true.
3. Attend a virtual showing
Now, you may be wondering: “How can I check the houses my agent finds during the remote home buying process?” This is where the use of technology comes in.
You should take the option of an online video home tour if the seller offers it. If they don’t, your agent can make use of video apps (such as Matterport VR, FaceTime tour, Google street view, etc.) to show you what the place looks like.
Because there is a slight difference between being at a place physically and seeing it in the video, you’ll have to rely heavily on your agent’s opinion. This is why you must ensure that you let your agent know your must-haves and deal-breakers from the beginning. That way, you will feel confident if they tell you a house meets your requirements.
4. Demand for the structural layout
If you are interested in a house after attending the virtual showing, you can ask for its structural layout.
This document will provide you with an insight into the house floor plan, room measurements, and indoor space. With this information, you can determine if the home is the best for you. For example, you get to know if there is enough outdoor space for your kids to play. Or make plans on how you intend to utilize the space.
If the structural plans aren’t available, you can ask your real estate agent to send you the rooms’ approximate measurements. That way, you can create a mock layout on your own.
5. Make an offer
After getting satisfied with everything you see, you have to make an offer fast. You should include your mortgage pre-approval document alongside your offer letter to show the seller your seriousness.
You can also ask your real estate agent for tips on what to include with your offer letter. They might have a bit of insight into the seller’s motivations for selling, and this can help you craft a letter that will put you ahead of other buyers.
6. Don’t skip home inspection and contingencies
You should not consider skipping the home inspection. This tip is especially important as sellers may want to play “smart” with you and hide their house defects because you’re buying it remotely.
In the same vein, you should not remove the contingencies – not even if you are trying to close the deal faster unless you are buying the house at a steep discount and know what you are getting yourself into. Contingencies are there to protect you from bad deals. Additionally, they grant you the legal backing to walk away with your earnest money safe.
7. Close remotely
After the appraisal, inspection, and contingencies have been met, you should prepare for closing.
Fortunately, you don’t have to be physically there for this too. Why? Because the E-Sign Act of 2000 digital states that digital signatures are as valid as physical signatures. This means that any closing documents you sign virtually are legitimate.
And whoola, you are a homeowner!
Let Bost Redevelopment help you buy your dream house!
Having an agent like Bost Redevelopment in your corner automatically increases your chances of getting your dream house – remotely.
Our expert team of real estate agents will provide all the support you need throughout the house buying process. We will use our network and connection to help you find the house of your dream. Lastly, we will negotiate with the seller to make sure you get a favorable deal.
Want to talk more about your options? Please leave us a message below with your contact information and let us know how we can help you.