Tag: “first time homebuyer”

OL buyer story: Tiffanie & Brett

From renters for life to SoCal homeowners When Malibu, CA-based blogger and Mom Tiffanie Anne and her soon-to-be husband Brett started looking for a new place for them and their 1.5 year old daughter, Tenley, the idea of buying a home in Southern California seemed completely out of the picture. As her apartment hunt grew fiercer -- finding a 2 bedroom apartment in the Calabasas / Malibu / Agoura Hills neighborhood area for under $2,400 is no small feat --

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Going on a home tour? Here's 5 things to overlook.

When you’re looking at homes, it can be hard to be objective. After all, since you're paying so much money, it’s only natural to want a home that's totally perfect for you. That said, sometimes, it pays to be blind-ish. In this crazy market with limited inventory, not every home issue should be a dealbreaker. Don't miss out on your perfect home by paying too much attention to these five things that don't really matter on your next

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OL buyer story: Jessica & Sam

First-time homeowners find stability in a hectic market After a decade of renting, Jessica and her fiancé Sam grew tired of the volatility that came with the increasing costs of living in Los Angeles. So, as median monthly rents creeped up ~5.5% each year, the couple looked to home ownership for greater financial security and peace of mind. "I mainly wanted to get out of renting because I was scared of getting pushed out [of my place],"

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Escalation clauses: what are they, and why should you be careful with them?

For many buyers, adding an escalation clause seems like the answer to a big problem: the end to endless negotiations in a bidding war. Especially in seller’s markets like the ones we’re seeing today, this clause may seem like a huge relief. But, there are several considerations before deciding to include one to ensure you've got your best foot forward. What is an escalation clause? An escalation clause is most often seen in markets where multiple offers are

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Breaking it down: accessory dwelling units

With the rising costs of real estate, more home owners and prospective buyers are looking to make the most out of their property. Whether you call them by their proper name -- accessory dwelling units -- or you know them as something else, we're breaking down what the term means, why these units are so popular, and, if you’re interested, how you can go about putting one of your own on your new property. So, what is an accessory

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Hacking your way to home ownership: how about getting a roommate?

Okay, so maybe you're not quite ready to create your property empire, but the good news is, you don’t have to wait until you can afford to buy an investment property to find out if the landlord life is in your cards. These days, more and more people are renting out a room in their primary residence to get a taste of what having tenants will be like and to offset the rising costs of home ownership. If you’

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3 seller contingencies to look out for as a buyer 👀

Usually, when home sale contingencies are discussed, the conversation revolves around how the right clause can be used to give the buyer "an out" if their financing falls through or if inspection reports come back with a ton of red flags. However, there are also contingencies that offer home sellers an added layer of protection if the sale goes awry. With that in mind, here are some of the most common seller contingencies, as well as why they're

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Buying a house as a freelancer or entrepreneur? Here's what you need to know.

If you work for yourself and you're ready to buy a home, you're not alone. These days, more people are choosing to become freelancers and entrepreneurs than ever before. And, while you may once have heard that becoming a homeowner is impossible while self-employed, fortunately, that outdated idea is a thing of the past. Buying a home as a freelancer or entrepreneur may be slightly different than going through the process while working a 9-to-5, but it's definitely doable. Read

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First time homebuyer in Austin, TX? Here's what you need to know.

In case you haven’t heard, Open Listings is now live in Austin, TX -- and, we’re not alone. According to the 2018 Emerging Trends in Real Estate Report, Austin is the second-fastest growing city in the nation, just behind Seattle (which we're also in). The city's rise in popularity is anything but surprising. In a place known for everything from a vibrant music scene to unforgettable barbecue and affordable housing rates, everyone wants a piece of the action.

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Wondering how to budget for a home? Here's 4 ways to start.

Many buyers, especially first-timers, worry about how to budget to buy a house -- and it’s not hard to see why. Becoming a homeowner is a huge financial commitment, and it only makes sense that you’d want to feel fully prepared before taking the plunge. Luckily, with a little planning and foresight, you can easily make that happen. Read on below to learn more about how to appropriately budget to make your homebuying dreams become a reality and

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Submitting an offer below asking price? Here's what you need to know.

Once you're serious about buying, deciding how much to offer on a house becomes one of the most pressing concerns. It’s hard to find the balance between trying to get a fair deal, writing an offer below asking, and actually getting the house. Luckily though, we’re here to help you sort this issue out. We’ll explain when a low-ball offer is appropriate, how to determine the right sale price, plus a few alternative ways to save. With

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House hunting for first-time homebuyers: is there a right way?

A lot of buyers, especially first-timers, worry about whether or not they’re going about their home search the right way. On the one hand, buyers fret that if they find their "dream home" too early, they might be missing out on something better. But, on the other, if the process takes a while, they worry that they’ll never find a home that works for them. The FOMO is real. Keep reading to find out if you’

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Getting cold feet: can you back out of buying a house?

You submitted an offer and it was accepted. Everything seems to be going your way, except for one major detail: you’re not sure if this house is actually the right one for you. Sound familiar? It happens. Buying a home is a big deal. Lots of buyers get cold feet when they go to buy a home, and some do end up walking away to explore other options. If you’re unsure of the next steps to take, this

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Going solo: 5 things to know about buying a house on your own

Buying a house single? You're not alone. Today, more people are getting into the property ownership game whether or not they're coupled up. While this prospect is exciting, buying a house on your own can also feel a little scary. But, if you’ve been thinking of taking the plunge, we've got your back. Below is some of our best advice for tackling this journey so you're able to jump in to the real estate market with plenty of confidence:

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Should you get pre-approved for a mortgage before looking?

TL;DR Yes. In this competitive homebuying market, getting pre-approved for a mortgage is truly the first step that you should take in buying a home. However, first-time homebuyers are often intimidated by amount of legwork that it takes to get approved and end up shuttling this process to the end of their to-do list, which can be a costly mistake. So, if you’re one of those would-be buyers, this post is for you. We’re taking a closer

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