6 Questions You Must Ask The Home Seller Before Making An Offer
June 28, 2021
You certainly don’t want to make any mistakes when buying a home. The best way to avoid making a mistake is by getting as much information as you can from the seller. A real estate agent will be able to provide almost all of the basic information you need to know about the property like the size, the number of bedrooms, amenities included, and so on.
However, you should always ask the home seller a few important questions directly before making an offer. So, what are the questions you should ask?
Let’s take a look:
1) Why are they selling?
Job relocation. Moving to smaller/bigger places. Retirement. People move out due to various reasons.
You should ask the seller why they are selling the property because their answer might help you get a better deal. For instance, in scenarios like job relocation or the death of someone in the home, people are in dire need to sell their homes quickly. The rushed sale means that those sellers will be more likely to settle for a lower offer, depending on your negotiation skills. Of course, that’s not going to be the case with every home but you never know.
Sellers are also more willing to negotiate for a property that has been on the market for a long time. Hence, your chances of getting a better deal increase in such circumstances.
2) How much did they pay for it?
You can get a clear idea of how the property market fared in the neighborhood by knowing the price at which the current owner bought the home. Therefore, it is one of the most important questions to ask the homeowner. It may also help you in negotiating a better price.
For instance, if the seller bought the home at a rock bottom price, they might be willing to bring down their asking price a little while still making a reasonable profit.
Just in case, you are unable to get the information from the homeowner, you can always check the public records available at the Register of deeds.
3) How are the neighbors and neighborhood?
Traffic congestions. Speeding on roads. Crime. Bothersome neighbors. Maintenance concerns
Only the current homeowner will be able to give you holistic insight into these topics. Although you might not get thorough answers, you can still get a pretty good idea of the common problems that you might have to face, in case you buy the property.
Besides relying on the seller’s information, it is recommended that you pay a visit to the local police department to get a clear picture of the crime statistics in the neighborhood.
4) How old are the components of the house?
Knowing the age of the components will give you an idea of the health of the home. For instance, an asphalt roof has a lifespan of 15-20 years. If the roof of the home you are buying is already that old, then you are already looking at one major expense in the near future.
Similarly, the lifespan of the heating, cooling, septic, and plumbing systems are also important to ask about.
5) Have there been any major repair works or renovations in the past?
Don’t forget to ask whether there have been any major problems, repair work, or renovations done in the past. If there were, what was the damage? Is the building permit available for the repair work?
If the permits were not issued, the authorities can force the homeowner to get them issued to satisfy the code requirements. It can turn out to be a costly and time-consuming affair.
You don’t want to get stuck with all this, right after buying a home. Do you? Therefore, it is a good idea to ask the seller about it and get it all done before making an offer.
6) What’s the best thing about this property?
Asking this is one of the best ways to get the seller talking about the property. Emotions do get attached when you have lived in a home for some time, and that’s when you might get to learn about the neighborhood and the community from the homeowner which they would not have bothered to share before.
Summing it up
These were some of the most common questions that you might ask the home seller before making an offer. Not only will the answers to these questions clear any doubts about the health of the home that you are buying, but they will also paint a clear picture about the neighborhood, which is vital.
Just remember, don’t leave any questions unanswered in your mind. If there’s anything that comes to your mind, just ask the homeowner. If they cannot provide a satisfactory answer, then you must think twice before going ahead with the deal.
For the best help in buying a home, it is recommended that you get in touch with a Negotiator Recognized Partner. They will negotiate on your behalf and make sure that you get the best deal.
All the best!