Relocating for a job, while an exciting career opportunity, also means uprooting your entire life and replanting it elsewhere on a time crunch. It can seem like a whirlwind between selling an existing home, packing up belongings, getting children enrolled in new schools, and tying up all the loose ends of your old life while searching for and closing on a new home that could be hundreds or thousands of miles away. So, amongst all you have to do in a limited amount of time, how do you find a home you will love and are not just settling for – and do it quickly?
Find a real estate agent in the area
You can do all the internet searches you want, but only a real estate agent based in the city you are moving to truly understands the local market. Is the price a home is listed for a fair price for the neighborhood? There are tools to find out current school ratings and crime statistics, but which way is the neighborhood trending? When relocating, you’ll be tempted to pull the trigger quickly on an offer, but a real estate professional will make sure it’s really a home you’ll love. They will not only know of homes that meet your structural requirements, but they will be familiar with the neighborhoods in the area to ensure you find the one that is the right fit for your family. Plus, a real estate agent knows the process of purchasing a home inside and out, and will ensure you meet all the deadlines to expedite a quick sale.
Start dealing with the lender immediately
It isn’t finding the house that is the major hurdle; it’s working with the lender. So, the faster you find a home, the faster you can complete the loan process. Getting a pre-approval can help you know from the beginning what type of home you’ll be able to afford. Having all your financial paperwork together will help expedite the pre-approval process. After you’ve chosen a home, different types of loans will take varying amounts of time to close. For example, VA mortgage lenders allow appraisers a 10-day window to schedule the appraisal. Also, distressed homes or those that are bank-owned short sales take more time to close than those that are not distressed. It takes on average from 30 to 45 days to close on a home, so it is a good rule of thumb to leave at least two months for the entire process. Negotiate with your employer if possible to ensure you have at least this much time. Or, if you must move sooner, make sure your employer will pay short-term rental costs while you wait out the closing process.
It’s quite simple - being organized, quick to action, and trusting an experienced local real estate agent is the key to a quick and satisfying relocation. Don’t buy a home blindly from afar or without inside knowledge of your destination city or you can find yourself starting the moving process all over again sooner than you and your family anticipated.