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5 Keys to Buying A Home Remotely, Easily


5 Keys to Buying A Home Remotely, Easily


1) Work with a Realtor you trust

Working with a Realtor you trust is especially important when you are shopping for a home where you don’t live. You want someone who is your ambassador to the town as well as your advocate during the purchase process. Someone who communicates clearly and has access to the answers to all kinds of questions you might have since you aren’t in town to find resources yourself.  Someone who you feel understands what you are looking for so you can ask “What do you think?” and trust them to be honest if the answer should be “It doesn’t seem like it checks enough of your boxes,”  

2) Get pre-approved & make sure your lender knows WHERE you are shopping

Getting pre-approved should always be one of the first steps you taken when preparing to buy a new home. I especially recommend it when shopping for a second home because emotions, evn positive ones, can  by establishing your budget you can set realistic expectations for what type of properties you can afford.

Loans types, price limits, and rates can vary based on where you are planning to purchase a home.  Specifically jumbo loan rates have different caps in different markets. So If you get pre-approved in your home market that top loan amount for a conventional loan might be lower than it is here in Summit County.  Need help finding a local lender ask your awesome Realtor, most of us have favortie lenders who have served our past clients well and who we will happily connect you with. 

3) Learn to love video tours

Of all the things we learned during 2020 a big one is how much can be done remotely via video. When interviewing Realtors make sure they are willing to do video walk throughs or film custom tours for you, in case a property you are interested in doesn’t have a tour provided by the list agent. I actually recommend a personal video tour even when a property has a professional tour because it can be a chance to peek inside closets, see the views from all of the rooms, not just the hero shot included with the lsitng.  I actually have a gimbal for my phone so I can give live video tours that don’t look like a sequel to Blair Witch.  

4) Attend The Inspection, if at all possible

I’d argue that it is more important to attend the inspection than it is for you to see the house in person before making an offer. As great as video is there are certain aspects of a house that are hard to notice remotely via video. The inspection is your chance to go through the property from roof to basement with a professional to identify repairs that might need to be made or quirks that you might not have noticed before. During a showing you only get to spend a limited amount of time in a home, during an inspection you will spend a few hours.  Even if you don’t find any major problems with the home, this is your chance to really get to know the building that you will make your home. 

5) Don’t worry about closing in person

Remote closings easier than ever and not even that uncommon anymore.  Some title companies and lenders offer completely virtual closings with money simply wired prior to closing. Even if your lender or title company don’t offer virtual closing paperwork can be mailed or emailed to you, signed and overnighted back to the title company. Keys can then be securly mailed to you or held by someone in town until the next time you visit.  It’s exciting to get to actually step foot in the house on closing day but it is probably the least important time for you to be here. 


BOUNUS! Ask ALL the questions

When you have the ability to look at house in person some questions like, “Is there a coat closet?” and “Does the master bedroom window face the neighbors’?” are answers just by observation.  Other questions like, “does the HOA allow fences?” and “Is that a gas fireplace?” come up naturally in conversion.  When questions are asked over email and during phone calls it can feel like you have too many questions when it is actually a completely normal amount. So don’t hold back, ask every question that comes to mind.  Homes are always a big purchase so make sure you feel comfortable and get the answers you need. 

Images courtesy of:  Photo by Colton Sturgeon on Unsplash