A Guide for First Time Home Buyer
featuring Guidance from Derek Leman
Welcome to Atlanta
Atlanta is a city that is renowned for both its extensive history and its impact on the future. Martin Luther King Jr. was born in this city of change. The capital of Georgia is a multicultural city with a sizable economy, where both Fortune 500 enterprises and small, regional businesses are based. Rich in it’s social activities there is something for everyone who is looking to move to Atlanta for living.
Valuable Guidance For Home Buyers
Trends in the Atlanta Real Estate Market*
The Seller’s market has slowed and Buyers have more leverage now. Sellers are still getting high prices for their homes, but Buyers are able to negotiate things like getting money for closing costs, having Sellers make repairs or provide funds for repairs, and so on. I do not think there will be large reductions in home prices, but Buyers will have more houses to choose from and be able to get better terms for their purchase contract.
Tips for First Time Home Buyers in Atlanta
- Remember the reason home ownership is the American Dream. Homeowners amass on average 15 times the wealth as compared to renters, according to Forbes Magazine (August 3, 2022). Buyers also say that freedom and control over their living space is what they love about getting out of the rental rat race.
- Know that there are encouraging changes for Buyers in this new market as we enter 2023. Buyer have more power now in the negotiation with Sellers. Houses are taking longer to sell and getting fewer offers. Bidding wars are a lot less common. Sellers are agreeing to pay for repairs and even agreeing to contribute to the Buyer’s closing costs. As if these signs were not enough encouragement, consider too that Buyers now have a lot more homes to choose from.
- Be smart about the process for Buying a home. Know what you need to have in savings. Get your financial documents together such as pay stubs, 1099’s, income tax statements. Then, ask your Realtor for some referrals to mortgage lenders. Realtors tend to know mortgage companies that work well with Buyers and their referral can save you a lot of headaches. Then, get fully pre-approved for a loan before you start looking at houses.
- Educate yourself about down payments, closing costs, and the options you have to help you with them. Your Realtor and your mortgage loan officer can explain them to you in detail. If you are low on cash savings, consider a number of options. Do you qualify as a veteran for VA Loan? If you do, no down payment is required. Do you qualify for any down payment assistance programs? Ask your Realtor. Did you know on an FHA loan you only have to put down 3.5% instead of the 5% required for most conventional loans. And know that closing costs on a loan are usually going to be more than $8,000 and that you must pay them with cash. But also know that in this market, you can get Sellers to pay part of all of your closings costs.