Top 3 Protections You Need When Buying An Alexandria VA Home

Smart HomebuyerAlexandria VA Real Estate - Whether it's a buyers market or a sellers market, there are three protections that I encourage my buyers to include in their written offers:

  1. A home inspection contingency - It's normal to first see the photos of Alexandria VA homes for sale, and perhaps a video.  Even when we look at a property for the showing, we're looking to see if your furniture can fit, or if there are enough closets for all of your things.  At the most, we'll probably spend 30 minutes in the house that you decide to buy.  A home inspector comes in with an unbiased eye and will test the appliances, plumbing, electrical, HVAC, foundation, and attic.  The home inspector is also armed with tools to check for leaks and moisture.  The home inspection gives you an opportunity to understand how the guts of the home work.  If there are items that need to be addressed, they can be negotiated with the seller during the negotiation period and if for any reason you and the seller cannot agree, the contract can be terminated.
  2. An appraisal contingency - When the market it hot, it's common to see escalation clauses and offers that are above the asking price. But what happens when you're getting a loan and the bank says it's not worth what you're paying? If the home appraises for lower than the contract price, then you have the option of paying the difference between the appraised price and the contract price, or asking the seller to lower the price.  If an agreement cannot be reached between you and the seller, then the contract can be terminated.
  3. A financing contingency - While a mortgage approval is a must with any offer, it's still a good idea to include a financing contingency, especially for condos.  When you are getting a mortgage loan, the underwriter has the final say as to if your loan will be cleared for closing.  Sometimes, there are things that come up that are out of the buyer's and seller's control that affect financing.  For example, if you're buying an Alexandria VA condo for sale and during the contract period, the association reports that the number of rented units is higher than the number of owner-occupied units, then you may not be able to close.  What about identity theft? Imagine that your identity is stolen while you're under contract and your credit scores immediately drop and you now have a collection on your credit.  Yes, it has happened.  The financing contingency protects you in the event that things beyond your control prevent you from qualifying for the mortgage.

When you're ready to buy a home, let's make sure that we have these protections in place with your offer.  A home inspection, an appraisal, and underwritten financing can confirm that all is well, or alert you to actions that may need to be taken prior to closing.

Your Top Alexandria VA Buyer Agent

Are you thinking about buying a home in Alexandria VA? Make sure to call an experienced  buyer agent. With 17 years of selling experience, I’ve successfully worked with buyers and sellers to find homes for sale in Alexandria VA. If you’re looking for a bank owned foreclosure, or short sale, I can help. Just call me today at 703-623-8759.

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