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July
25

What to Know When Buying a Historic Home

Historic Home

If you envision yourself owning a home that stands out from other properties or boasts design details that are rare in modern properties, a historic home is a terrific option to consider.

There are a few things our real estate agents want buyers to know when considering historic homes to help them confirm that the property is right for their lifestyle and property needs. Here's what you need to know. 

  • A Property Must Meet Certain Criteria to Receive a Historic Classification
    The historic home designation isn't arbitrarily used. Instead, the home must meet certain criteria to receive the historical classification. A home isn't a historic home just because it's old. To be called a historic home, the property must be a minimum of 50 years old. The overall structure must look the same as when the property was first constructed. It must also meet a qualification that proves the property is historically significant, like playing a role in a historical event, housing an important person or group, or using an architectural style that's historically significant. 
  • Historic Homes Often Experience Higher Than Average Appreciation
    When compared to other homes in the area, historic homes usually appreciate in value at faster rates than other properties. This increase is driven in part by the limited stock of historic homes. Historic homes aren't as widely available as other home types, and this limited supply helps support higher home prices. People who purchase historic homes tend to hold onto them for years, a fact that further drives steady increases in the value of historic homes. If your home is located in a historic district, this may further boost your home's appreciation. Historic districts contain multiple historic properties that create a neighborhood with properties that are required to maintain a certain standard of appearance. 

remodeling plans

  • Remodeling Plans Should Maintain the Home's Structural Integrity
    Any remodeling that you complete must support the home's original design and structure. In many towns, renovations to historic homes must be approved by a local review board. It's usually fine to repair or even replace materials that are original to the home when necessary, but these repairs must support the property's historical appearance and, whenever possible, use materials that are original to the home. While massive renovations inside a historic home usually aren't permitted, enlarging the home by building an addition may be permitted as long as the addition adheres to the home's architectural style. Any existing details in the original portion of the home should be reflected in the addition.

Financing Options

  • The Process of Acquiring Financing and Insurance for the Home is a Little Different
    Before you start looking at Rockingham County homes for sale, you'll want to obtain mortgage preapproval so you know how much you can borrow. However, you need to know that the process for acquiring financing for a historic home is a little different than securing financing for a traditional property. Some mortgage programs can't be used for historic homes that require a lot of repairs; the lender is likely going to want to know how you're going to pay for these repairs. There are programs available, including the Limited 203(K) loan and Title 1 Property Improvement Loan, that provide homeowners with affordable loans to repair their historic homes. You'll also want to shop around for your home insurance, as some home insurance companies may be reluctant to insure properties that they feel will be expensive to repair or replace. 

Tax Incentives

  • You May Qualify for Tax Incentives
    There are tax incentives available for homeowners who need to rehabilitate a historic property. The Federal Historic Preservation Tax Incentives Program is one tax credit you may qualify for; there are also tax deductions available if your property is eligible for a historic preservation easement. 
  • Properly Maintaining a Historic Home Requires More Resources Than the Average Home
    While historic homes have long lifespans thanks to their quality construction and durable materials, they do occasionally need maintenance. Maintenance for a historic home is usually a little more expensive and time-consuming than maintenance for a conventional property. Historic homes may require specialized materials and labor to ensure that the repairs are in line with the home's original design. 

Architecture

  • Historic Homes are Valued for Their Distinctive Details
    Historic homes contain details that are often only found in this type of property. Your windows or other details might not be perfectly centered, or your floors may creak and appear a bit uneven. These aren't issues that need to be fixed; instead, they should be viewed as details that are unique to a historic home's distinctive style and architecture. 

A historic home is a terrific option for anyone who wants to own a property that's a part of history and features a one-of-a-kind design. Ready to start the search for your historic home? Contact us today to get started!

August
16

7 Ways a Real Estate Agent Can Help You in a Hot Market

Real Estate Agent Tips

A combination of low-interest rates, limited nationwide inventory, and pent-up demand has made this year's real estate market one of the hottest in history. In a competitive seller's market, buyers often lose some negotiating leverage and are forced to enter into bidding wars.  

However, if you're looking for a home in today's real estate market, all hope isn't lost. The key to finding the right home for the right price is a combination of patience, dedication, and working with an experienced real estate agent. 

Our real estate agents are working with clients to help them navigate the complexities of today's hot market. Below are some ways we can help you:

closing tips

  1. Agents Can Help Minimize Issues During Closing
    After putting weeks of work into looking for the right house, securing financing, and negotiating terms, the last thing you want is for the deal to fall apart at closing. Title problems and financing issues are the things that most commonly delay closings. An experienced real estate agent can establish a realistic closing timeline and knows how to spot problems before they arise.

  2. Agents Are Expert Negotiators
    Buyers can lose some negotiating leverage in a hot seller's market, which is why is the expertise of your agent is more important than ever. As a consumer, negotiating with a home seller can be an emotional process. Agents are able to remove emotion from the equation entirely. They also don't have any issue with being persistent and aggressive when asking for contingencies. Buying a new home is an emotional process, which is why it's important to have a good agent negotiating on your behalf.

competitive offer

  1. Agents Can Help You Make A Competitive Offer
    In a hot market, the key to winning a bid is making your offer as competitive as possible. Luckily, there are many things you can do to help your offer stand out without drastically exceeding the asking price. For example, you may consider waiving the appraisal contingency, putting down a higher earnest money deposit, and making your offer as straightforward as possible in order to increase the chance of your offer being accepted. The bottom line, your agent can work with you to create a compelling offer.

Market Tips

  1. Agents Know The Market
    Not only can your agent help you find homes that meet all of your criteria, but they're also familiar with current market trends as well as specific neighborhoods in your area. If you're considering one of these beautiful Shenandoah County homes for sale, your agent can provide you with insights about homes and locations that you may not be able to find on your own. They can also help you gauge whether a particular property is over or underpriced.

  2. Agents Can Act Quickly
    Buyers need to act fast when looking for a home in a seller's market, especially if you're considering one of these great Augusta County homes for sale. If you find a property you absolutely love, a good agent will be willing to turn around an offer in a matter of hours. 
    real estate paperwork

  1. Agents Can Handle The Paperwork
    A real estate transaction requires an immense amount of paperwork, which an average consumer likely can't handle on their own. Between the offer, counteroffer, and contingencies, there is a lot riding on the accuracy and completeness of the paperwork. Your agent will not only ensure everything is documented correctly, but that all pages are signed and initialed.

real estate resources

  1. An Agent Can Connect You To Resources
    A standard real estate transaction often involves several third parties who perform various services throughout the process. If you need a mortgage broker, home inspector, or notary public, your real estate agent likely has a wide network of trusted resources. Real estate agents often manage multiple closings each week, so chances are, they've had ample opportunity to vet the efficiency of the service providers in their network. Since your agent can connect you with the services you need to ensure a smooth transaction, you can avoid a lot of stress and headaches along the way.

While a hot seller's market can present a number of challenges for buyers, working with a good agent is the best way to mitigate risks and secure the home of your dreams. For more tips on how to make a competitive offer, contact us today.

February
24

Homebuyers: Don't Make these Earnest Money Mistakes

Homebuying Help Earnest Money

Our REALTORS® at Old Dominion Realty are always looking for ways to make the home buying process easier. No matter whether you're looking for homes for sale in Virginia or homes for sale in West Virginia, our team is with you every step of the way.

Buyers have a lot of questions about how to optimize their finances and get the best deal. But you can't ask a question on a topic you haven't heard of yet! One of the most important topics slips through the cracks for many buyers: Earnest money.

Earnest money is a deposit a prospective buyer puts down during a transaction to show they are serious about going forward. Once the home reaches closing, the money is returned. It can also be applied to closing costs or mortgage loans.

It usually equals about 1%-2% of the home's purchase price.

In general, the earnest money isn't part of your financing package. The need to pay this money out of pocket catches many buyers by surprise at a crucial time. It's vital to understand the role of earnest money and how to use it in a way that serves your interests.

Look out for these critical earnest money mistakes:

  1. Offering Too Little
    While 2% of the selling price is a good baseline for earnest money, sellers can expect anywhere up to 10%. The best amount to offer depends on the market and how much interest has been shown in the home already. Enlist your real estate agent in choosing the right figure.
  2. Removing Contingencies
    Contingencies are contract clauses that allow you, the buyer, to walk away from a transaction under certain circumstances without losing the money you have invested. Sellers don't benefit from contingencies and may argue strongly against them, but think carefully before you let any go as part of your negotiation.
  3. Overrunning Deadlines
    Once you submit your earnest money, the clock is ticking. Most contracts will spell out a date by which you must reach closing. If you don't complete the transaction in time, you might end up forfeiting your earnest money – even if you go on to close on the home a few days later.
  4. Buying As-Is Without Due Diligence
    "As-is" doesn't always mean there's something wrong with a home, but you should take extra steps to protect yourself. In particular, it's worth getting a complete home inspection that will give you a detailed insight on any issues that might need repair in the near future.
  5. Voiding a Contract Too Quickly
    If a sale falls through, both the buyer and seller must act to void the contract. If you feel you've lost your earnest money through no fault of your own, you're entitled to withhold your signature. Then, selling the property becomes impossible until the dispute has been resolved.
  6. Charging Into Buying a Home
    When you're buying a home, it's essential to strike a balance – moving fast enough to get things done on schedule, but slowly enough to make thoughtful decisions. Each step counts. Set your priorities early on (in writing!) so you can easily recognize when a home really meets them.
  7. Crediting Earnest Money Incorrectly
    Earnest money should be treated with care as part of your real estate transaction. That means making sure that a trusted third party receives the money and maintains it in a separate account. This can be a bank, a title company, an attorney, or even some real estate firms.

Earnest money is a commitment. Take the right steps, though, and your bases will still be covered if new information makes the deal less desirable. Your real estate agent can help you as the voice of experience and an advocate who can negotiate on your behalf.

Buy a Home with Old Dominion Realty

Contact us with questions about earnest money or to get started searching for a home.

January
27

5 Reasons You Were Denied a Mortgage Loan--And How to Fix Them

Buy a House Home Loan Approval
Getting denied for a mortgage loan may put a temporary halt to your dream of buying a house, but it doesn't have to be permanent. When you find out why your loan application was denied, you can correct any issues and reapply. Here are five common reasons your loan application can be denied as well as suggestions from our REALTORS® on how to fix them:

  1. Check your credit score.
    Your credit score is based on your credit history and is supposed to represent your creditworthiness. If you've failed to make payments or have made them late, you may have a credit score that's too low to qualify for a mortgage loan.

    What to do: Check your credit reports to make sure they don't contain any errors, and if they do, work with the credit reporting agency to correct them. If you've been denied a mortgage loan because of accurate information, start making all your bill and loan payments on time, every time. Also, you can check with a different lender.

  2. You don't have enough money for a down payment and closing costs.
    You'll need to make a down payment as a condition of most mortgage loans. In addition, you'll need to be able to pay closing costs, which are fees that are due at the closing of a real estate transaction. The down payment and closing costs can't be included in the mortgage loan, so if you don't have the money to pay them, you may be turned down.

    What to do: A relative may be willing to give you money for a down payment as a gift. You can also ask the seller to pay some of the closing costs.

  3. You have too much debt compared to your income.
    Your mortgage lender will look at your debt-to-income ratio, which calculates how much of your monthly income goes to debt payments. If your lender thinks you won't be able to cover the monthly mortgage payment in addition to your debts, you may not be able to get a mortgage loan.

    What to do: Pay down more of your debt and also avoid taking on any more debt. You can also try to reduce the interest rate on some of your debt by, for example, transferring your credit card balance to one with a lower interest rate.

  4. You recently changed jobs.
    Lenders prefer it if borrowers have held their current jobs for at least two years. This represents stable employment and gives the lender confidence that your income will allow you to make your mortgage payments. If you've recently changed jobs, a lender may deny your mortgage application.

    What to do: Ask your employer to provide documentation such as your job offer letter or contract and several pay stubs.

  5. Your home appraisal is too low.
    A condition of your mortgage approval will be an appraisal of the property. If the appraisal is higher or in line with the purchase price, you won't have any trouble. But if it's lower, your mortgage loan application may be denied.

    What to do: Try to get the seller to accept a lower price, or pay the difference between the appraisal and the purchase price in cash.

Buy a House with Old Dominion Realty
Contact us today to find out more about how to qualify for a mortgage loan, even if you've been previously denied. We're very familiar with the mortgage loan process and can suggest lenders that have helped others buy Harrisonburg homes for sale.

December
2

How Early Is Too Early for Home Loan Pre-Approval?

Home Loan Pre-Approval
When it comes to buying a home, the process can seem quite overwhelming — especially if you're a first-time home buyer investigating finance options. If you're like many prospective home buyers, you'll be working with a mortgage lender to secure a rate that works well with your budget and lifestyle. Our REALTORS® recommend that most prospective homeowners get pre-approved for a loan before they put an offer in on a home.

Everything You Need to Know About Mortgage Pre-Approvals

When searching for Harrisonburg homes for sale, you should already have an approximate budget in mind. This range can be frugal, sliding only by $10,000 to $20,000, or it can be a little more flexible by stretching between $25,000 to $50,000. Once you've determined this amount, you'll be ready to enlist the help of a mortgage lender through your preferred financial institution.

When you make an offer on a home, you'll need to either show that you're pre-approved for a mortgage or you'll need to secure financing from a lender in order to move forward with the sale. Although you can wait until after you've made an offer on a home, we recommend that you get a mortgage pre-approval first. A pre-approval involves a bank or broker examining your loan application to determine if you'll qualify for your desired mortgage. This is based on factors like:

  • Employment History
  • Income
  • Debt-to-Credit Ratio
  • Credit Score

One reason we recommend a pre-approval is because some lenders may offer you less than what you need depending on those factors. If you're pre-approved without issue, this gives the home seller reassurance that you're serious about your offer.

However, your pre-approval won't exist indefinitely. In fact, there is a shelf life for all mortgage pre-approvals, albeit one that takes into account that real estate transactions aren't finalized overnight. How long do pre-approvals last? Unfortunately, there is no single set duration that your pre-approval will be valid for, but a 90-180 day time period is common in the real estate industry.

Three months can fly by in the blink of an eye, especially if you're searching for a home in a hot market — which means you don't want to secure a pre-approval too early. Of course, you could find the home of your dreams next month and need an immediate loan approval so you also can't wait too long into your search. When is the best time to get pre-approved? We recommend that you first get prequalified with your lender when you're ready to begin your home search. Pre-qualification isn't as set in stone as a pre-approval, but it allows a lender to assess your finances and tell you how much you will likely be approved for based on your current finances. This will provide you with an idea of where your financial position sits in the eyes of a lender.

If your pre-qualification is sufficient and doesn't require you to raise your credit score or decrease your debt, we then suggest that you identify the neighborhood and specific home features you desire. Knowing the price range, location and must-haves will help you narrow your focus to specific homes. Now that you know exactly what you're looking for, you're in a great position to seek pre-approval for a loan and continue your search.

Would you like assistance with your pre-approval and homebuying process? Contact us today to get started!

Get Started Buying a Home

November
4

6 Tips for Veteran & Military Home Buyers

Military and Veterans Buying a Home
Buying a home as a veteran or military member comes with its share of unique challenges, but you also have advantages that aren't available to the average buyer. Whether you're shopping for your first home or looking to upgrade from your current one, there is plenty that you can do to make sure you're getting a deal on a home that you'll truly love. Our REALTORS® are here to help you find a great deal on your next home, with six tips for military and veteran home buyers.

  1. Learn the Advantages of VA Loans
    As a military homebuyer, you have the benefit of being able to access VA loans when you purchase a home. VA loans offer a number of unique advantages, including no down payment requirement, and no monthly mortgage insurance payment. However, as with any loan, you need to meet the requirements to qualify for a VA loan. That means you'll want a clean credit report and a steady source of income.
  2. Get Pre-approved for a Mortgage
    Getting pre-approved for a mortgage is key because it tells you home much home you can afford and shows sellers that you're a serious buyer. Shop around to see what different lenders have to offer, and start working on pre-approval as soon as you find the right match. With pre-approval out of the way, you can get serious about shopping for your next home.
  3. Know Your Credit Score and Pay Down Debts
    If you want the best terms for your loan, you'll need a strong credit score. Start by getting a free credit report from the three major bureaus, and search for anything that may be hurting your credit score. Improve your score by paying down old debts, making all payments on time, and avoiding opening new lines of credit until after you have purchased your home.
  4. Do Your Homework on Homes and Neighborhoods
    With the financial side of the equation in order, you can get busy shopping for a home that you'll love. Finding the right home requires research on the neighborhoods where you'd potentially like to live, and the homes available in your target destination. Take the time to thoroughly research neighborhoods online, and plan to make at least one in-person visit if possible. The more you learn, the easier it will be to find the right home.
  5. Think of Your Home as an Investment
    As a military member, there's always a chance that you'll eventually need to relocate after buying a home, but that definitely shouldn't stop you from becoming a homeowner. If you shop for an appealing home in a desirable neighborhood, you'll have a much easier time selling or renting the home if you have to move to a new location.
  6. Find a Real Estate Agent That Understands Military Homebuyers
    The right real estate agent makes all the difference when you're shopping for a home, and that's especially true if you're a military member or veteran. Make sure you're working with an agent who understands the unique needs of military members, as well as all of the benefits available to you. An agent who knows VA loans will make it easier to secure a mortgage, and find a home that fits your needs. Don't be afraid to interview multiple agents until you find the right match.

Ready to start shopping for homes with a real estate team that understands the unique needs of military and veteran homebuyers? Contact us to buy and sell homes throughout Virginia's Shenandoah Valley and Eastern West Virginia.

October
21

No Deal: When to Walk Away from a House Negotiation

Walk Away from Home Negotiation
When is it time to walk away from a house negotiation? Buying a house is a complicated process, and it's easy to get emotional about a home that seems like a perfect fit. Sometimes, however, the fit simply doesn't work out, and knowing when to walk away can save a lot of stress in the long run. Everyone's "walk away" point is a little different, but there are also common signs that can tell you when to walk away from a negotiation. Our REALTORS® understand what it takes to negotiate a home sale, including the signs that it's time to move on to the next option on your list.

  • Appraisal Shows Lower Home Value, Buyer Won't Budge
    If you fall in love with a home, then you may be prepared to make an offer close to the seller's asking price. But what happens if the appraisal comes in lower than the asking price? Normally, the seller should negotiate a lower price based on that new information. If the seller isn't willing to budge, then it's time to walk away.
  • Seller Doesn't Disclose Important Issues
    Disclosure laws vary by state, but in many locations, sellers are required to disclose any serious issues – like foundation damage, water damage, or roof damage – to the buyer. If you're negotiating based on the information the seller provides and you find out that the seller has been withholding or hiding key information, it's best to move on to your next option.

  • Inspection Reveals Serious Underlying Problems
    Even if the seller doesn't intentionally withhold information about the property, a home inspection can reveal serious issues that the seller wasn't aware of previously. If the seller is willing to factor the cost of repairs into the price, then you may be able to salvage the deal. If they're not willing to lower the price or you simply don't want to deal with the issue, walk away.

  • Falling Out of Love with the Home
    It's almost impossible to remove emotion from the equation of buying a house, and it's normal to fall in love with a home that seems to match all of your needs. Sometimes, a closer look will reveal that the home wasn't all you thought it was, and for some buyers, that's reason enough to walk away. This one's more subjective, but buyers definitely do get cold feet from time to time.

  • Termite Damage or Pest Issues
    Pest issues – especially termites – aren't always easy to spot at first glance, and can be difficult to notice at all if you're not trained to see them. A dream home isn't so dreamy when it has termite damage, and pest problems can certainly be reason enough to walk away.

  • Seller Doesn't Negotiate in Good Faith
    While most of the items on our list deal with the condition of the home, an adversarial negotiation can also cause you to walk away from a deal. Everyone's level of patience with negotiations is a little different. If the seller is hiding information, unwilling to negotiate on key terms, is overly rude during negotiations, doesn't listen to your concerns, or seems unwilling to make a deal that works for both parties, moving on to your next choice will often be your best option.

Sometimes, walking away from a negotiation is simply a necessary step toward eventually finding the home that you will love to call your own. Contact us to buy and sell homes throughout Virginia's Central Shenandoah Valley and Eastern West Virginia.

October
14

10 Ways to Build Community In Your Neighborhood

Build Community in Your Neighborhood
Home is much more than what you get when buying a house — it's your neighbors and neighborhood as well. When those that live in a neighborhood look out for one another, socialize as more than neighbors and sincerely care about their surroundings, everyone wins. If you're eager to cultivate a sense of community in your neighborhood, our REALTORS® want to help. Here are ten effective ways to build strong bonds with your neighbors.

  1. Take Pride in Your Home
    Building your community starts right after buying a house. Take pride in your home by keeping your exterior looking presentable. Repair or renovate eyesores and keep up on your lawn maintenance. This includes keeping your sidewalk, driveway and curb free of debris and garbage.
  2. Lend a Helping Hand
    Now that your home is taken care of, you want to help others care for their properties. Offer your neighbors help with any issues on their property. This can be as simple as mowing an aging neighbor's yard to helping a family of five install a new swimming pool.
  3. Help Improve Your Surroundings
    You can also help the neighborhood as a whole by caring for community amenities. If a park or shared pool area is dirty, help clean it up. If you have an HOA or dedicated neighborhood group, volunteer to help with whatever they need.
  4. Be Sociable
    How well do you know your neighbors? If your knowledge of their lives doesn't extend passed their first name and profession, then you might not know those you live near too well. Be sociable and take the time to get to know them on a personal level. Don't be afraid to share personal information and take an interest in their lives.
  5. Attend or Host Events
    If your community hosts holiday events, weekly get-togethers or seasonal activities, attend them and take this opportunity to meet as many people as you can. You also don't need to wait for an invitation to get to know your neighbors. Invite them over for a gathering at your home like a barbeque or dinner party. Tell them to bring their children so the younger residents of the community can get to know each other as well.
  6. Develop Trust
    Trust is an important element of building a strong community. Ask your neighbors to pet sit or babysit your children when you need a little help. Once you feel like you know your adjacent neighbors well, you may also ask them to collect your mail or water your plants while you're on vacation.
  7. Get Involved
    You can do a lot for your community by getting involved in the larger organizations that make decisions for your town. Join community action organizations or consider running for a position within the town's government. You can effectively represent your neighborhood and the interests of your neighbors while bettering the entire town.
  8. Report Problems
    If you see something, say something — the motto of many neighborhood watches applies to all members of the community. Always report any health or safety hazards you may discover. This includes all public property like broken sidewalks and private property such as dead tree limbs extending from a neighbor's yard into the main street.
  9. Treat the Entire Neighborhood Like It's Your Property
    Be considerate as you live within your neighborhood. Drive slowly and cautiously as if your children may be playing around any corner. Help find lost animals as if you lost a pet yourself. Never litter and remove hazards from the road to keep your area safe and clean for all to enjoy.
  10. Be Sincere
    Just be your caring self, acting with compassion and respect to those around you, and you'll be surprised how much any gestures of kindness can unite the community.

For more tips on how to build community in your neighborhood or help to buy a house in a tight-knit community, contact us today!

October
7

Pros and Cons of Buying a Historic Home

Pro tips for Buying a Historic Home
Buying a historic home can be an exciting, rewarding decision, and it's a dream for many shoppers of all ages. There are certainly many charms to owning a historic home, from unique, timeless designs to the stories that await around every corner of the home. Yet owning a historic home is not for everyone, so it's important to be aware of both the benefits and potential drawbacks. Our REALTORS® are here to help you make an informed decision, with our guide to the pros and cons of owning a historic home.

The Pros of a Historic Home

  • History and Charm
    Trends in home designs, layout, materials, and fixtures evolve over time, which means that a historic home can present a totally different look and feel from new construction in the area. Historic homes are filled with stories from floor to ceiling, and experiencing that history first-hand is a major attraction for many buyers.
  • Established Homes and Neighborhoods
    Since historic homes have been around for a long time, they're often located in established neighborhoods, with mature landscaping on the property. In addition to making for a nice place to call home, a location in a well-known, established neighborhood can lead to a higher resale value if you ever choose to sell.
  • Keeping History Alive
    When you purchase a historic home, you're also helping ensure that the home's history is maintained long-term. The work that you do to care for the home helps to keep the home's history alive and carry it forward for future generations to enjoy.
  • Possible Financial Incentives
    While it's not guaranteed, in some locations state or local governments will offer financial incentives for purchasing a historic home, including tax breaks or lower loan rates. This can help offset the maintenance costs of owning a historic home, and make it easier to purchase the historic home of your dreams.

Potential Cons of a Historic Home

  • Restrictions on Renovations
    Historic homes, especially if they're located in designated historic districts, often come with significant rules about what you can do with the property. This means that you may have to clear some red tape before you can build an addition, or alter the home in any significant way.
  • More Maintenance Than Newer Homes
    Since historic homes have been standing for a long time, key systems like electrical and plumbing may present more maintenance issues than would be present in a newer home. Maintenance can also be more complicated because you want to do everything you can to preserve the look of the home.
  • Possible Hidden Issues
    Any home can have hidden issues regardless of age, but there are a few key issues that are more common in historic homes. There may be an oil or septic tank in the yard that needs to be removed or mismatched renovations from previous owners. If you plan to purchase a historic home, be sure to set aside some extra cash for maintenance and restoration.
  • Higher Insurance Costs
    Regular home insurance companies don't always offer the insurance products you need to insure a historic home, which means you may have to purchase historic property insurance for the home. Historic property insurance often comes with a higher cost than insuring a newer home.

No matter what type of home you decide is right for you, our team is here to help you find the right match for your needs. Contact us to buy and sell homes throughout the Central Virginia Shenandoah Valley and Eastern West Virginia.

September
30

5 Steps to Buy a Home in a Different State

Buy Home Different State

Moving to a new state is a great way to begin a new chapter of your life while experiencing the diversity our country has to offer. Our REALTORS® understand that many homeowners dream of one day moving to another state but aren't sure what steps to take first. With years of experience helping homeowners relocate across state lines, we've put together this helpful guide with steps to buy a home in a different state without hassle.

  1. Organize & Prepare
    At very least you're buying a home which is a milestone purchase. At very most, you're conducting two substantial real estate transactions — buying a new home and selling your current home. The first step is to get organized and prepare to invest your time and energy into successfully closing on both transactions.

  2. Enlist Help from a Relocation Specialist
    Thankfully, you don't have to juggle this process alone. A knowledgeable and experienced REALTOR® that specializes in nationwide relocation is your best resource. They will be your advocate in your new town while you're away and ensure your current home's sale is finalized without a hitch.

  3. Decide Whether to Sell or Buy First
    Some believe you should finalize the sale of your current home before you begin the process of purchasing a new home. This is a wise decision because it allows you to free yourself from your physical and financial commitments to the previous home while helping you fund the new home. However, every situation is different, and it may be in your best interest to buy before you sell. Speak with your REALTOR® to identify the benefits and disadvantages of beginning the process in either way.

  4. Be Present for the Inspection
    While the number of times you travel to your new city prior to moving may be limited, there are a few situations when you must be there in person. By committing to the inspection date, you're able to understand and visually see any issues that might be present. You can also ask the inspector about anything you may be unsure of and learn information or tips that wouldn't be on the inspection report.

  5. Close Electronically if Possible
    Closing on the home is an act worth celebrating; however, it's not an element of the sale you need to be involved in in-person. Electronic closing is common now and a title company can easily help facilitate these signatures remotely.

Old Dominion Realty is a proud member of Leading Real Estate Companies of the World (LeadingRE). No matter if your dream home is across the street or the globe, the LeadingRE team of over 560 firms encompassing 4,300 offices is ready to help you relocate to anywhere on the planet. These sales associates within the LeadingRE group deliver unparalleled performance and exceptional client experiences in every transaction they conduct.

Are you ready to find your dream home in another state? Our REALTORS® are ready to help. Contact us at Old Dominion Realty today to get started on your search.

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