The Titanic was said to be unsinkable. We know what happened.
Many transactions seem just as solid at the outset, buoyed by the optimism that naturally comes with new things. But there are a myriad of obstacles that can quickly turn a real estate transaction into a disaster.
While there's no surefire way to eliminate all of the potential challenges that may arise, being aware of them and making good preparations in advance can make them much easier to manage.
1. Unclear goals. Having a home picked out without clear goals will just confuse and frustrate you. It's like finding your dream home with no idea how much you can afford. After all, if you don't know what your intended destination is, how will know when you arrive?
2. Insufficient plan detail. All too often, house hunting plans don't provide sufficient detail to ensure success. Not only can this be confusing to you or family members, but it can lead to inaccurate time and cost estimates. Have an entry and an exit plan. How long will you stay?
3. Unexpected Changes. All home shopping suffers some degree of change. It's inevitable, because unforeseen issues will arise that demand some change. The key is to not let them derail your plans
4. The right people for the job. Make sure the right professionals are working with you. They need to have the experience, skills, and knowledge needed to complete the task. A careful, honest evaluation should be done prior to the start of the home buying process.
5. Accountability issues. It's critical that each person on your team, your Realtor, your lender and your family is clear on his or her roles and is accountable for their completion. A lack of accountability can lead to a breakdown, particularly where there are extreme dependencies.
6. Consistent processes. Having a professional Realtor and a qualified lender make it easier to manage and search for homes more efficiently. While each search may change, the process is the same, or very similar.
7. Poor communication. Keep lines of communication open with everyone at all times. This needs to be a two-way street. Set this up as part of the process, so that there is regular communication. Knowing about any possible delays or issues early can help you avoid more serious problems down the road.
8. Unrealistic deadlines. Sometimes, a short deadline can get everyone focused and energized. But setting unrealistic deadlines can be a recipe for disaster. It will kill the excitement and lead to unhappy campers.
9. Risk mismanagement. Sometimes the house hunting process is planned out in detail, everyone is on board, and things are running smoothly. Then an unforeseen occurrence happens and the project skids off the rails. Why? Failure to stay on top of things. A good purchaser must not only plan but also prepare for obstacles. Constantly ask "what if?" questions - both of yourself and of your team.