When it comes to buying new homes in San Diego, it isn’t just couples that are doing it.
There are actually many single women all across the country purchasing new homes, after a divorce, when their kids leave for college, or for a handful of other reasons.
This demographic may be less informed at times when it comes to the specifics, simply because they aren’t taken seriously or they don’t have trusted resources to help answer the hard questions for them.
Of course there is an easy fix for these things and it isn’t difficult for anyone to find the home they deserve.
Here is a look at some of the top tips to consider if you are a single female in the market for a new home, and want to be prepared.
Make sure your credit is healthy
It is imperative to know what your credit rating is and make sure that it’s a healthy number.
You are able to check as often as possible to see what the number is, and you are even entitled to a free report once a year.
Another great way to keep your credit stable is by paying all your bills on time, so do your best when it comes to making payments.
Two great resources I recommend are Credit Karma where you can monitor your credit - although, I want to point out the credit score you see won't most likely be accurate the next time you buy a car or home.
And, Annual Credit Report which is the only credit checking resource authorized by Federal law.
You are entitled to one free report a year - since there's 3 credit reporting agencies in TransUnion, Equifax, and Experian - what I do is order one from each every 4 months.
If you're looking to improve your credit score fast - read our latest article on the latest hacks you can use.
Get all the answers
When you’re going through the searching and buying process of finding a new dream home, make sure you ask all the questions you want to.
At the same time, make sure that you are getting all the answers you require.
If you are having trouble getting a solid answer about something, this may mean that there is something wrong with a certain house or that you need to do more research before you make a decision.
Have a support system
You can also get answers to your questions from your support system.
Ask your friends, family, co-workers, acquaintances, virtually anyone you know about the house buying process and if they can offer you any advice on how it works or essential things you need to know.
You may be surprised at what they can tell you.
One resource you can check out on our website is our step by step guide.
Don’t set your sights too high
While you probably want the nicest house you can afford, it is necessary not to set your sights too high.
You need to be reasonable in what you can afford and what it will cost you.
Furthermore, this goes for the interior of your home as well.
Don’t go bankrupt trying to make the inside too posh; there will be time for that after you get used to paying your mortgage and other bills associated with your new home.
It will take a while to find the right flooring and colors you want for your walls, so take all the time you need once you’ve moved in.
This is something I can't stress enough.
Just because you "invested" $30,000 in new flooring, painting, and bathroom upgrades doesn't necessarily mean it's "sweat equity" and you will be getting that back out when it's time to sell.
Find something you really like
You also shouldn’t rush finding the perfect house.
If you are partial to a style or a certain neighborhood and you know you can afford it, don’t compromise for something else.
This could lead to regret or you not liking the house you buy.
On the other hand, if you don’t know what you’re looking for, it’s worthwhile to figure out what you do like before you actually start looking at houses.
There are many types available in San Diego, so you may get overwhelmed and end up making a hasty decision that affects many years of your life.
You can check out all real estate listings in San Diego on our mls search - and, one thing I highly recommend is getting our market reports.
On our San Diego market reports you can pick any neighborhood, town, city, etc in San Diego - and find out what's active, pending, or sold.
Get to know your real estate agent
It is always a good idea to get to know your real estate agent.
This is not just so you will be purchasing a house through someone you can trust, but you may also want to keep using them for subsequent purchases.
Moreover, they will likely have plenty of other information that they can share with you, so you can get through the complete buying process smoothly.
Save all the money you can
When you begin to decide that you want to get a new house, it is important that you start to save as much money as you can, as early as possible.
This can help lessen the sting of the down payment and mortgage bills, as well as allow you to be in good shape financially throughout the whole process.
This is yet another aspect to talk to your real estate agent and your support system about, so you can get a better idea of how much you’ll need to save and what your payments may look like.
However, since I handle both real estate and mortgages, I wanted to point something out.
As of this writing - if you make less than $117,000 and are buying a home of around $630,000 or less - it's quite possible to get Up To $31,000 in grant money to use towards your down payment and/or closing costs.
You can read more about how this is possible on our case studies page.
Think about the future
You cannot purchase a house without thinking of your future.
Not only should you consider if you will be able to afford a certain house over the years, but you should also think about if you can see yourself in the home for many years.
If you can’t picture spending a lot of time somewhere, you may be looking at the wrong place.
Unless you specifically purchase a place to upgrade and flip, you’ll likely want to spend many years there, so it has to be a place that feels warm and comfortable to you.
Some reports show that the average American lives in and then sells their home after about 6 years.
When it comes to buying a home as a single woman, it may be a daunting task.
However, there is plenty of help out there for you in a number of different places.
Always knowing your credit score, having people you can count on, and making sure that you have enough money saved are excellent tips to keep you on the up and up in the housing market.
You’ll also need to think about your future, get a home that you actually like, and be sure that you can afford what you’re purchasing.
It’s important to trust your instincts, take your time, and get all the answers you want, so you don’t feel like you were pushed into buying something too quickly.
It is up to you to be as informed as possible and you will be able to find the home you’ve been looking for in San Diego.
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PS - One thing I specialize in is helping current and new homeowners buy their next home with very little (if any) money down, structuring our offer so the selling pays some (or all) of your closing costs, and having them pay as close to market rent as possible.
If you're interested in finding out how you can get UP TO $31,000 to buy your next home - read our case studies.