You’ve Found “The Home.” Now What?

The long, tiring search is over and you’ve kissed a lot of frogs. You've finally found your dream home and want to make an offer on the property. How do you know how much to offer and if you’re getting the most value for your money in this Brandon MB market?

The offer phase of purchasing a home isn’t always straightforward and you need to at least know the market on homes in that area so you can determine if you’ll be getting the fair market value for that home. Ask your real estate agent to go through neighborhood  comparable actives and solds with you.  This report should be helpful with the offer process.

Lowballing is a common term in the world of real estate. It means that you’re offering to buy the house for a number that’s far below the market value. You run the risk of insulting the seller and losing the home for good.

But, if you don’t know the fair market value of the home you could overpay by thousands of dollars. To zero in on the market value of the home you’ve chosen, you should know if you’re in a seller’s or buyer’s market.

A buyer’s market means that there are plenty of homes for sale, but a shortage of buyers. This gives you more power to bid lower than the asking price and to even ask the seller to pay for some or all of the closing costs. In a buyer’s market, you’ll find the seller more willing to negotiate.

If you’re in a seller’s market, there is a shortage of homes for sale and you’re likely to have several potential buyers making offers at the same time. A seller’s market is a little tougher to negotiate in because you may need to compete with other buyers.

It’s sometimes devastating to a potential home buyer when their good-faith offer is rejected – especially without a counter offer. This could happen when the seller receives many offers and your offer was much less than the others. Or, the seller may back off of your offer to see if he can eventually get a better one.

All may not be lost, even if your offer has been rejected by the seller. The seller may not have accepted any offer on the home and you may still have time to negotiate by moving rapidly with a higher offer. This may result in a bidding war that your real estate agent will need to help you with.

A buyer’s agent is extremely helpful if you’re a first-time home buyer. He or she will be familiar with the local market and be able to negotiate the best deal on your behalf. You’ll learn a lot during this process, which may be helpful to you when you decide to sell.

If you’re working in a seller’s market and there’s a real shortage of homes in the area, you may still be able to get your dream home. Find a home you really love in an area you’re interested in and write a letter to the homeowner.

It’s a true leap of faith to try this method, but it’s worked for thousands of buyers and it just might work for you. Even if you receive a “not interested” reply, at least you’ll know you tried.

Never rush to make an offer in any market until you’re sure the home is right for you. Unless you do the proper research on the home, you may be rushing in to a situation that you’ll later regret.

Whether you live in Brandon MB, Virden MB or you're searching for acreages in these surrounding areas, the search can be strenuous and time consuming.  You can call on me to be your trusted go to REALTOR®, with insight on all new listings and recent home sales, within our local real estate market.

How to Buy Your First Home: A Quick Step-by-Step Guide

Buying a house is one of the most life-changing decisions you can make. Since it is a big move that can affect your life’s personal and financial aspects, many aspiring homeowners see the whole process as overwhelming.

The good news is there are practical steps to take and put your worry at ease. If you are one of those first-time homebuyers, consider the following to have a hassle-free home buying experience:

- Check your Credit Score

Your credit score makes a big impact on the amount you can borrow, the interest rate that you may qualify for, and the amount of down payment you will be required to make. Because of this, make sure that your credit score is as high as possible before applying for a mortgage.

- Determine your Budget

Figure out how much you can afford to pay for a monthly mortgage. To calculate your budget, compute your current income and monthly expenses, including health insurance, car payments, and student loan payments. Consider the additional costs associated with a new house, such as maintenance, utilities, homeowners insurance, and property taxes.

- Consider your Down Payment

As much as possible, prioritize putting down 20 percent of the total purchase price as your down payment. If your budget does not allow you to do that, you can adjust and look for more affordable options that go as low as 3.5 percent. Ask your lender about these options, and make sure they suit your financial standing and preferred loan type.

- Get a Mortgage Preapproval

Don’t miss out on the opportunity to buy the home of your dreams by getting a mortgage preapproval after doing your budgeting. This will speed up the mortgage application process by helping you understand how much you can afford and the types of loan programs you qualify for. To get started, collect all your financial documents and track mortgage rates.

- Choose a Mortgage Lender

Choose your mortgage lender wisely. They will help you secure the right mortgage based on your ideal home, timeframe, and current credit score. Make sure the professional you hire will customize a mortgage solution for you and answer all of your questions.

- Explore Housing Options

Search for houses online that fit your budget, taste, and preferred lifestyle, and then schedule sessions to visit them. If you are having trouble exploring your housing options, look for a real estate agent you can trust. They will serve as your partner in the home buying process.

- Voice Out your Offer

Once you have found your dream home, it’s time to make an offer and close on your house. Ensure that you choose the right property for you by asking for advice from your agent. They will draw up an offer letter for you and submit it to the seller. They can even help you request repairs, add upgrades, or make your offer contingent, depending on the condition of your home.

- Make the Necessary Preparations to Close the Deal

Before purchasing any home, work closely with your real estate agent and mortgage broker to ensure your upfront expenses are covered. These include your down payment and several closing costs. Additionally, familiarize yourself with all necessary documents before signing them during the closing.


While the home buying process seems intimidating for first-time homebuyers like you, it does not have to be stressful. Find the road to happy homeownership by remembering and following the steps mentioned above. Don’t forget to work with a trusted real estate agent like me so you can easily search for the perfect home and have a convenient buying experience.

Explore homes for sale in Brandon and Virden with my help. I am Chris Low, an experienced real estate agent who will help you every step of the way during home buying. I will also determine the right property for your needs through the Multiple Listing Service system. Contact me today to get started in your home search!

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