11 Costly Real Estate Mistakes to Avoid!

11 Costly Real Estate Mistakes to Avoid11 Costly Real Estate Mistakes to Avoid

FishHawk Ranch real estate sellers and buyers, here are 11 costly mistakes to avoid. Making any of these mistakes will cost you money!


Not Hiring a REALTOR®

For buyers, hiring a REALTOR® pretty inexpensive or free! I do not charge my buyers anything for my services. Make sure you hire a local expert. For FishHawk Ranch real estate that would be me of course! Their knowledge of the current market, contracts, vendors, and negotiations is priceless! A REALTOR® will represent you and be looking after your best interests.

Not Doing Your Diligence

Researching a location and community before you buy is very important. It is really the one aspect of a home that cannot be changed. Is this the area that you and your family want to live in? What kind of amenities does the community have or what is nearby? How are the schools? How is the commute? Is there public transportation nearby? Are there a lot of rentals or foreclosures in the community?

I specialize in FishHawk Ranch real estate and the real estate in the surrounding Tampa Bay area. Even though I believe FishHawk Ranch is one of the nicest communities in Florida, I suggest that all of my clients do their own research before they buy there are also a number of other great communities in Florida and the Tampa Bay area.

Not Getting a Home Inspection

Regardless of the cost or age of a home, get a home inspection! Buying a house is generally the largest single purchase a person will make in their lifetime. Do you buy a car without test driving it first? Paying $500 – $600 to have a professional home inspector review the property is like having a professional test drive the house for you. No home is perfect, not even a brand new home. You will base your offer on what is visible during your showing. The inspection is important to ensure that there are no major issues with the home that are not readily visible.

Not Using Vision

Homebuyers should try and look past the pink room, shag carpeting, 1980’s panel walls, and wallpaper. Replacing worn carpet and paint is relatively inexpensive and easy to fix. Look beyond those simple things. Does the house have enough space for you? Do you like the layout? Is it in the neighborhood you want? Will it meet your needs? Don’t pass up on a great house because you don’t like the color of the family room!

Not Sticking to Your Budget

Get a pre-approval! It is the first thing you should do before shopping for a home. That said, just because you were approved for a $550,000 home does not mean that is how much you should spend. Set up a budget and stick to it. Include items like the mortgage payment, property taxes, hazard insurance, HOA fees, CDD fees, and some extra money for unexpected household repairs. Be realistic, stick to your budget and only look at houses that you can truly afford!

Don’t Buy Before You Are Ready

Buying a home is a huge financial responsibility. Before you buy, make sure you are financially and emotionally ready. Even though there are mortgages out there that start for as little as no money down recommend having some reserves in savings. You will need money for the escrow deposit, down payment, appraisal, home inspection, closing costs, and any new home costs once you close on the property. Is your job stable? Are you thinking about expanding your family? Are you thinking about moving in the next few years? These are just some of the items to consider before purchasing a home.


Not Hiring a Realtor

Okay, you heard this already under the Buyer’s mistakes. This one is a little different. Typically the seller does pay the seller’s and buyer’s REALTOR® out of the proceeds of the home. However, these costs should easily be made up by the market knowledge, marketing, contract, disclosure, and negotiating experience the REALTOR® has. One of the most important aspects is your home will be listed in the local multiple listing service (or MLS). This gets your home in front of all the other REALTORS® in the area. Remember for the buyer, using a REALTOR® generally does not cost any out-of-pocket money so almost every qualified buyer has a REALTOR®. Well, guess what, that buyer now has access to your listing! This is a powerful tool! Hire a local real estate expert. In my area that would be a FishHawk real estate expert!

Being Home for Showings

When an appointment is made to show your home, leave! Please do not be home during the showing. It makes the potential buyers uncomfortable. A buyer needs to make an emotional connection with the home. If they are uncomfortable and do not feel like they are “at home” they won’t buy your home! Also, a great REALTOR® will use this opportunity to find out how motivated you are to sell this home. I used to be a ranked poker player, if you are home while I am showing your home, I guarantee you that by the time I walk out of your house, I will know your motivation for selling, where you are moving to, how fast you need to move and in all likelihood your bottom line selling price. Do yourself a favor and let the buyer’s agent show the home and answer any questions the buyer may have.

Over Renovating

Typically money spent making custom changes to your home will not be recouped when you sell the home. The same holds true for over-improving your home compared to the rest of the neighborhood. If you make these improvements because you want to enjoy them in your home, great. Just avoid thinking that just because you spent $30,000 on a custom kitchen you will be able to list and sell your home for $30,000 more than the rest of the homes in the community.

Asking Too Much For Your Home

In general, a home that is listed too high, to begin with, sells for less than it should in the end. The most showings and action you get on a home for sale is when it is first listed. If your home is overpriced, potential buyers will not want to view it or it won’t show up in the MLS searches for that area. Once your home is on the market for a while buyers start to wonder what is wrong with that house. You are better off having your REALTOR® run a CMA for you and get the current market value of your home. This will determine an accurate price to list and sell your home. It’s not terrible to be on the high side of the range, just don’t be above it. On the rare chance, you find someone willing to pay more than the true market value the buyer’s appraisal will come in below the purchase and you will need to reduce your price anyway. For FishHawk homes and homes in the Tampa Bay area feel free to get in touch with me. I will be happy to run a CMA for you.

Not Staging Your House

Buyers need to visualize themselves in the house and they need your help to do so! At a minimum, sellers should conduct a thorough cleaning, remove clutter, make sure the home is well-lit and fix any major aesthetic issues. If the home is an upscale property or vacant property a professional home staging company may be worth the price. In a National Association of REALTORS® survey, most REALTORS® believe that staging increases the sales price of a home between one and five percent.

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About the Author

 The above Real Estate article “11 Costly Real Estate Mistakes to Avoid!” was written by Jeff Gould.

Jeff is a top-selling, nationally recognized real estate broker, REALTOR®, and local FishHawk Ranch real estate expert.

In addition to the FishHawk area, Jeff sells homes in the entire Tampa Bay area. Including Lithia, Riverview, Valrico, Apollo Beach, Brandon, and the rest of the Tampa Bay area.

If you are looking to sell or buy a home anywhere in the Tampa Bay area, Jeff is your local and trusted professional.

Contact Jeff Gould FishHawk Realtor

Jeff can also be reached via text or phone at (813) 421-3007.

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