What are Property Virgins and is that really a term? Yes that really is a term and Property Virgins are first time homebuyers. In today’s economy being a property virgin can be overwhelming and stressful and potential homebuyers can benefit from the knowledge and expertise provided by Sandra Rinomato. Property Virgins takes viewers inside the intense world of house hunting through the eyes of first-time buyers. The series focuses on the roller-coaster journey of property virgins’ first foray into real estate, offering tell-it-like-it-is entertainment and practical take-home advice.
Let’s take a look at one of the recent episodes and see what lessons were learned here.
Barbara and Erik are not looking for a show stopper house but they do wish to purchase their home in La Jolla which is a very exclusive part of town. They have been living in a cramp student quarter in order to save for that home in the area they both love. Do they have enough? Are they being realistic in what they can afford?
So here is what they have to work with
Barbara and Erik have been pre-approved $430,000; they have a down payment of $15,000 so they have a total of $445,000 to look around with. Sandra refers to La Jolla as one of the most expensive cities she has been in. Do Barbara and Erik have enough and what it takes to move into this community?
House Number One
Houses in La Jolla are generally higher then what Barbara and Erik have but Sandra managed to locate a townhouse list at $419,000 and it is move-in ready. As Erik and Barbara walk through the house they make mention about how small the spaces are, which is funny considering the house it twice the size of where they live in now. Sandra wonders if they are being realistic in what they really want when compared to what they already have. They tell Sandra that there are things they love but other things they do not like. They decide they like the area but they wish for more space so they decide is to keep looking.
House Number Two
In order to split the difference on space, money and location the next search takes them to nearby Clairemont. Sandra informs us that this area has the feel of La Jolla without the price tag. This recently drop in price bungalow is now listed at $395,000. The house needs some TLC and has all the room the family is looking for. They realize that it does need some work and are not afraid of it. They like the space and the “small upgrades” needed. Additionally Barbara and Erik like the area the house is in. Sandra informed Barbara and Erik that the house is a short sale which means the seller and the owner have to agree to the price. Barbara and Erik really like this house and feel that this can be their future home.
While the house is good for them, Sandra decides to go and show them another house.
House Number Three
This next house is a little north in a suburb called Mira Mesa. This suburb is a bit more inland; it is popular with commuters and offers ranch style homes on nice lots. This house is listed at $429,000 with all the space they need. These Property Virgins liked the look of the house. They tell Sandra that they are “torn.” Once Sandra tells Barbara and Erik the price they decide that they would prefer House Number Two mainly because of its location.
So Sandra proceeds to put in an offer. Sandra was advised from the selling agent that if they went in with an offer of $360,000 it would be favorable. This team decides to put in an offer for $360,000 and ask for $3,000 closing costs. Sandra educated Erik and Barbara on what it means to have a short sale so they can be prepared for the possible long wait. How long will it be and will they get this home?
The seller came back with a counter offer of the same asking price but they will no pay closing costs. They decide that it is still a great deal and they decide to go for it. So the next step will be to wait and see if the bank accepts the offer.
42 days later Sandra went to visit Barbara and Erik with a response from the bank. The bank came back with a counter offer of $388,000 and it is basically a take it or leave it. Barbara and Erik discuss how it is still lower then what they wanted so they accept the offer and now they are proud owners of a home they are happy with.
You have to see past the junk and see the potential.
Compromises are often needed to get into a high demand area.
So what other lessons can one learn? I recommend you watch Property Virgin on HGTV and see for yourself! Then, come back here and share your comments and advice. I would love to hear your tips I am sure you have great ones!