You just got the news that you’ll be moving to a new city for your job. Now what?
Finding a top-notch real estate agent who can guide you through the process will make the experience a little less daunting. If you’re moving through work, you’ll have a relocation company that will help you find a real estate agent in the area, but having an idea of the area and type of home you want to live in can be a big help. If you live too far to see the area beforehand, you can start your research online and ask your agent for assistance.
The agent you choose should be knowledgeable and familiar with the area, and they should be able to give you some insight about it. As a buyer, decide what type of place you’d prefer to live. Are schools important to you? Do you want to live in a newer neighborhood? Do you want to be close to the downtown area or do you want a more rural atmosphere? Do you want a lot of land or are the suburbs more your style? Knowing the characteristics of the neighborhood want to live in will help you narrow down the specific area that you want to be in, and once you know where you want to be, you’ll be able to find specific homes that interest you.
When I do a relocation, the first thing I do is contact the buyer to find out what their timeline is like and to see if they have to sell a home before they’re able to move to a new one. After we speak, I set them up on a search in our Multiple Listing Service so that they can start to get information about different homes on the market. If their relocation company isn’t assisting them with their financing, I also like to help them get pre-approved early on so that their search can be more accurate and we can start to narrow down the home choices.
If my buyers have a home that they need to sell before they can move, I advise them to wait until their current home is in contract before they start considering looking at homes. Inventory is low right now, so homes can quickly go into contract, and unless a seller is okay with a home sale contingency, the buyers will end up looking at homes that they can’t put an offer on.
After any contingencies are out of the way and the move date is set, buyers can look at homes more seriously. If you don’t live within driving distance, ask your real estate agent to help you add homes to your “look at” list or weed out homes that aren’t right for you by taking additional photos, doing a virtual tour, or researching the immediate surrounding area for you.
I usually try to get my buyers to choose 3 to 4 days a few months before they’re schedule to move to come out to the area and look at any homes that they think they’d like to purchase. I also recommend that buyers save a day of their visit to do final showings on any homes that they really like before submitting an offer.
The key to a seamless relocation is finding an agent who is willing to go the extra mile and do the homework for you. Relocating should be an exciting adventure in a new place, and if you have the right agent, it will be.