Key principles abide in strange market

There are few housing trends that have not been challenged in the last 18 months. Nevertheless, there are some timeless and fundamental principles that apply to the buying and selling of houses in almost all circumstances. As the local housing market continues to be unseasonably strong going into the fall, it is worth reviewing these fundamentals.

Buying a home is one of the biggest financial decisions anyone will make in their lifetime. As such, it is tied up with a lot of strong emotions. The same thing goes for selling a home. At such times, it is helpful to keep some key principles in mind.

For starters, everyone knows the adage “Location, location, location.” It’s a cliche. But it’s a cliche for a reason. Everything else about a property can be updated or altered. Location by its very definition is fixed. It is tempting to overlook this principle and go for a mediocre location, especially in a competitive market like the current one.

Despite its impressive longevity, this market will not last forever. It will not payoff in the long run to buy a home in an undesirable location or get caught up in an expensive bidding war. It won’t always be a seller’s market, and you may find yourself at a disadvantage when trying to sell a home in a bad location later on.

On a similar note, due to COVID and interstate migration trends, huge numbers of people are buying homes online, sight unseen. Caveat emptor. It is hard to get the actual feel for a home without being physically present in it. Online presentations and tours can be gorgeous, picture-perfect. But they’re not the real deal.

At the same time, just because it is in fact a seller’s market, does not mean that sellers should neglect best practices either. It is easy to overlook the big impact of preparing and presenting your home to prospective buyers. People are used to their own homes. They like them how they are, and can miss glaring flaws. f you want to make the most out of the current market, you need to put in the work into selling your home.

Put another way, don’t make a universal rule out of a particular set of present circumstances. It may be tempting in the present market to waive the inspection and rush to close on a house. Future you will be grateful if present you makes prudent and informed decisions instead of rash and expensive ones.

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