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The ultimate guide to buying a house in San Francisco

Townhouses in San Francisco near the City

San Francisco’s competitive real estate market can intimidate even the most experienced buyers. So prepare yourself for your foray into the Bay Area property market where your biggest edge is information and an astute real estate agent by your side.

This ultimate guide to buying a house in San Francisco will be your best bet in tackling this endeavor with guaranteed positive results:

Hiring the right local agent

Expertly navigate the local market and discover great San Francisco homes for sale with the help of an expert real estate agent. From updating you on the latest market trends to advising you on the best course of action, the real estate agent you choose will be a vital resource, especially in a highly competitive market.

Find an agent who is familiar with the local area and the type of property you want to purchase. Especially when buying luxury homes, it is best to hire one with years of experience in this particular field and the smarts to navigate it.

Also, this agent should be well-connected within the industry. These connections will serve them well, considering the requirements of some of their high-end clients. This niche type of clients opts to keep their sale private and thus, may require an agent-to-agent approach in finding capable buyers.

Financing your purchase

The preferred mode of payment for most luxury home purchases is cash, primarily because it allows for a one-time-only transaction with only a few people involved in the process. Apart from providing the buyer with the utmost discretion and confidentiality, it also hastens the closing process. This is why an all-cash offer gives you more leverage when it comes to negotiations.

Another available financing option for luxury homebuyers is a mortgage. While not exactly as convenient as compared to the one-time cash payment, it gives buyers an opportunity to spread out their investments and diversify their financial portfolio. Moreover, it offers certain tax exemptions.

Should you choose to use a mortgage, the first thing to do is to go window-shopping for the most ideal terms from different banks and lenders. Collate and compare these different loan terms then show these to your agent and/or a financial advisor. With their guidance, you’ll be able to select the one with the most amenable terms. Getting a pre-approved mortgage is also recommended to prove to sellers that you come to buy, not just look around.

Wants and needs

House hunting can be fruitful and fun if you are focused on what you want in your new home. Thus, before looking at San Francisco homes for sale, consider your wants and lifestyle needs. Without a clear idea of what you are looking for, your whole buying timeline could take longer than what’s necessary.

Ask yourself these questions as you go on your house-hunting search: What amenities do you want your property to have? How many rooms do you need? Is the neighborhood close to places important to you?

It’s a given fact that you cannot find everything you need in one property. So be open to compromises and look at the bigger picture. If the property ticks off most of the important items in your list of home requirements, then you can move on to the next steps.

Schedule home viewings

Pictures only show you the best aspects of a certain property, not its entirety. Only when you visit it personally do you see the finer details of the home you’re considering. You also get the opportunity to ask questions, both to the seller and to your agent. In asking the right questions, you will get the answers you need to make an informed decision regarding the house you’re eyeing.

Check out different neighborhoods

The neighborhood your luxury home is in will contribute to your lifestyle and overall well-being. This is why research of different locales is needed before making any final decisions.

Read community publications like newsletters and magazines to learn about the latest neighborhood developments. Go to local shops and restaurants and ask residents what they think about the area. Visit the community at different times of the day so you can get a better feel of the place, as well.

The home inspection

Luxury homes are not exempted from home inspections. This is a requirement that will give you an idea of whether there are any issues or faults with the property or not. It will also tell you if the home is worth its price tag.

To get the best San Francisco home buying experience, get in touch with Nina Hatvany and the rest of Team Hatvany. We have been helping people find their dream homes for 25 years. Get in touch with us today at 415.710.6462 or send an email to nina(at)ninahatvany(dotted)com.

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