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SOURCE:  Jaymi Naciri for realtytimes.com – Excerpts

“Buying a house and moving in is gonna cost you…well, actually, there are ways to make it  not quite so painful.  A willingness to negotiate and put in a little work, plus a little inside info on special deals you can take advantage of can help you cut some costs.  Here are eight ways to save money…

  1. DON’T TAKE IT ALL WITH YOU!  Furniture you no longer love?  Appliances in the garage?  These could be included in the sale….first time buyers might like to have them, and you won’t have to pay to haul it to your next home.
  2. LEAVE THAT FLAT SCREEN TV!  If it’s at least a few years old, consider leaving it behind.  The cost of taking it down and repairing the wall behind it plus the care involved in moving might not be worth it.  Flat-screen technology is always improving while costs are coming down, so it’s a good excuse to buy something bigger and better without spending a lot.
  3. NEGOTIATE EVERYTHING!  If you’ve been looking for a house or have bought one before, you are aware of closing costs…but are you aware of how much you can negotiate with your lender?  Shop around…when you receive your good faith estimate of closing costs, it will include lender’s fees, appraisal charges and title insurance premiums.  The lender charges some fees, and third parties charge others.  Find out which are loan origination fees and which are third-party fees.  Don’t guess – actually ask your lender or broker.  While some items are non-negotiable, like taxes, city and county stamps, recording fees, interest and reserves, negotiating on others that can be waived or reduced can save you money.
  4. BARTER FOR SERVICES!  Need a handyman, and have appliances or furniture you’re getting rid of?  You might be able to make a deal.  Ask about bartering during your first conversation.  You may be surprised about what you can get for what you’ve already got.
  5. MOVE SMART!  If you don’t want to move on your own, think of ways you can save by doing a “hybrid move.”  Do the packing/unpacking yourself.  Have everything on one floor (stairs can add to the cost of a move.)  Pare down – maybe you don’t need some of your stuff any more – sell it, if you can.
  6. CONSIDER MOVING AND STORAGE HYBRID OPTIONS.  A company like PODS or U-Pack might be a solution for you if you need self-storage.  The company drops off a mobile storage unit at your house and you pack it up yourself.  They then pick it up and move it for you.  You can tack on storage at the end if needed, making this a particularly good solution for those who have time between their move out and their move in.  This type of move can cost up to 35% less than traditional movers – but remember – you will be doing the labor, just not the driving.
  7. TAKE ADVANTAGE OF SPECIAL OFFERS.  Move-in offers for cable, internet and phone service can save you a lot of money, but they often come with a catch that could cost you down the line.  Be careful.  Look out for special, limited-time offers – one year or six-month specials that expire, leaving you with much higher rates after the introductory period.
  8. DON’T RUSH THE RENOVATIONS.  Chances are, after you move in, you’re going to start receiving all kinds of junk mail asking if you want to renovate, redo your lawn, and apply for thousands of credit cards.  In this endless pile of junk mail will be come special offers for new homebuyers.  Look out for coupons from handymen, companies selling flooring and windows, home furnishings, and offers from landscapers with discounts for new clients.  If you’re planning to shop, renovate, or do some work on your interior or exterior, taking advantage of a few of these offers can help shave down the cost.

SOURCE:  Jaymi Naciri for realtytimes.com   IMAGE:  djbox.ie

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