Tahoe home-selling tips: Not finding what you want for what you want to spend? | SierraSun.com

Tahoe home-selling tips: Not finding what you want for what you want to spend?

Lisa Wetzel and Jim Valentine
Special to the Sun-Bonanza
If you absolutely can’t live without a home with a large quare footage, then it is time to evaluate the affordability factor of what you're looking for.
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Shopping for real estate is no different than any other shopping. You figure out what you need, spice it up with what you want, and then you go looking for it.

Just like looking for a new hat or shoes, you look here and there until you find something that attracts you. Then you price it, flinch at the unexpected high price, or wonder why its so cheap. Then the fun starts — the sales process.

Looking for real estate isn’t much different, except you can’t go to Nordstrom’s and see a few thousand shoes in a matter of minutes. Homes take time to locate, evaluate, then view.

Most people today look hard on the Internet for their new home. That takes them so far — their Agent finishes the job for them. In Northern Nevada and the Tahoe-Truckee region, the distances between homes you will see on the same showing trip can be vast; the task is time-consuming.

With all of the resources available today, some Buyers are having a hard time finding the home of their choice. A major contributing factor to this dilemma is the lack of inventory.

More homes are beginning to come on the market, but the selection is still slim. What is a Buyer to do if you can’t find the home of your choice on the terms you are willing to agree to? There are really only so many options in such a situation.

You can adjust your expectations. If you’ve been looking for a 1,700-square-foot in a price range where there are only 1,400-square-foot homes, chances are that you aren’t going to find such a home in today’s market unless something comes on the market in a distress situation.

In that case, you will have amazing competition as the market is teaming with Buyers looking for a home as well as investors that will recognize the investment opportunity of that situation.

Before you give up buying a home entirely, figure out why you need that much square footage. Is it for the kids? How old are they? If you’ve a passle of teenagers, they will be leaving home soon (in theory!) and you will be looking for the smaller home again.

In the good ole days, people lived in smaller homes and the family survived. We aren’t saying you should cram ‘em in like the proverbial sardines, but how much personal space does everyone really need? Are there ways to reconfigure the home for your lifestyle?

If you absolutely can’t live without the increased square footage then it is time to evaluate the affordability factor. Can you afford it but are unwilling to do so, or is it absolutely out of the question?

Work with your Lender in this situation. Maybe there are options for you that will minimize the cash needed to close, or make the payment structure work better for you. Your Lender will take your initial meeting criteria and work with that until you change it.

Your Agent will do the same thing. If you say you absolutely won’t live in less than 1,700 square feet they may not show you the 1,500-square-foot home that would serve your purpose because of the floor plan design and quality of finishing.

Our Advice: Don’t be so set in your ways that you miss opportunities to get on with your life. Review your shopping parameters periodically. Something may have changed and you don’t know it. Perhaps, the market will change them; regardless, be sure to review them in proper current context.

Don’t compromise your standards too soon or unnecessarily, but keep an open mind as to what you can truly live with. You might just find yourself living the dream only with your eyes open, not a closed eye fantasy dream.

Lisa Wetzel & Jim Valentine, CDPE, SFR, work for RE/MAX Realty Affiliates in the Carson Valley. Visit carsonvalleyland.com or call 775-781-5472 for information.