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How to House Hunt (Successfully)

Cassie Mason Szeliga

Cassie fosters long-term relationships with her clients who oftentimes turn out to become great friends...

Cassie fosters long-term relationships with her clients who oftentimes turn out to become great friends...

Apr 23 5 minutes read

House hunting can be both exciting and daunting, especially in a second-home market like ours. With limited inventory and competition from locals as well as large investment groups, finding your dream home might seem like an uphill battle. However, armed with the right strategies and a proactive mindset, you can navigate the housing market with confidence and success. Here are some tips for you to use as you begin your home search:

Create a Dynamic Wishlist

Begin by crafting a wishlist that goes beyond just the basic criteria like the number of bedrooms and bathrooms. Consider your lifestyle preferences, such as proximity to trail access, Bethel Village, public recreational water access and the drivetime to Sunday River. But don't stop there! Create a dynamic wishlist that allows for flexibility and prioritization. Rank your wishlist items in order of importance and be prepared to make trade-offs if necessary. 

Leverage Virtual Tours

In today's digital age, harness the power of technology to tour homes from the comfort of your couch (or car). Many of our clients have started by choosing preliminary listings for us to "view" on their behalf. Whether the property is a quick condo tour at Sunday River or a larger new-construction home in Bethel, you can get the initial showing underway before driving to Maine. Take advantage of this opportunity to narrow your options efficiently and only visit homes that truly pique your interest.

Tap into Social Media

Expand your house-hunting network by following real estate influencers, agents, and local community groups on social media platforms. These channels often showcase coming-soon listings and insider tips that you won't find elsewhere. Engage with the online community, ask questions, and stay informed about the latest trends in your target neighborhoods.

Master the Art of Negotiation

Negotiation skills can make or break your house hunting success. Instead of focusing solely on price negotiations, consider other aspects of the deal that can sweeten the pot. Offer flexible closing dates, consider waiving certain contingencies (with caution), or include an earnest money deposit to show how serious you are about the purchase. Sometimes, it's the extra touch that seals the deal.

Explore Various Location

Don't limit yourself to the most popular condo buildings or the newest area subdivision. Stick to your dynamic wishlist but expand your horizons and explore more rural areas or hidden gems that might offer better value for your budget. You might just discover your dream home in an unexpected location that provides huge financial gains in the long run.

Think Long-Term Investment

While finding a home that meets your immediate needs is essential, don't overlook its long-term investment potential. Research local market trends, expanding trail systems and future development plans, to gauge the property's appreciation potential. Consider factors like resale value, rental income potential, and overall market stability to make an informed decision that pays off in the long term.

Partner with an Expert Real Estate Agent

Last but certainly not least, enlist the help of a seasoned real estate agent who knows the local market inside out. An experienced agent can offer invaluable guidance, negotiate on your behalf, and provide access to exclusive listings that aren't available to the general public. Choose an agent who understands your unique needs and preferences, and who is committed to finding the perfect home for you.

Stay proactive, stay informed, and above all, stay positive—you're one step closer to finding your perfect home. Happy hunting!

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