Six Ways To Beat The Stress Of Buying A Home

Divorce, Death and Moving are the three most stressful experiences in life. There are two very different kinds of needs that people have while moving. First there are the transactional needs, like finding the right home, finding a seller who is realistic, negotiating a price, filling out the paperwork, handling the escrow, and arranging for the move. There are also emotional needs that are involved when moving, and this is where the biggest stress comes in. Any competent agent will handle the transactional needs for you, but if your emotional needs are unfulfilled, you’ll be frustrated and may not act in your own best interests. The ideal real estate agent is one, who is competent with paperwork and numbers, but can also guide and counsel you through the emotional ups and downs of moving.

Here are the six best ways I have found to beat the stress:

1. Begin with the end clearly in your mind. Have an ultimate scenario of where you’re trying to go. What will life be like when you get there? How will it be better than where you are now? Dwell on that picture and write it out, fill up at least a page about how it feels in the new place. Having the goal in front of you at all times energizes you to achieve it, in spite of setbacks and frustrations, you will have a clearly defined plan in front of you. Emotions will run high and you need this anchor.

2. Be flexible. In your monetary calculations, overestimate by at least a thousand dollars. In this market, anything can happen between contract acceptance and closing. The inspections might reveal areas of concern that the seller is unwilling to fix or the repair costs are higher than the amount limited in the contract. Your real estate agent should strive to tie up loose ends as quickly as possible, but remember there is no perfect world. Most buyers feel a bit overwhelmed when taking on a new mortgage and the responsibilities of a new home. I have seen many buyers get angry when it seems like the cost just keeps going up. Anger is caused when reality doesn’t match up with the expectations you had in mind. When you anticipate things happening in advance, you won’t get angry. In fact, it’ll probably go better than you expected.

3. Have confidence in the process. There’s just so much to do, it’s easy to get lost to panic. You think you’re taking a big chance, but the truth is you’re giving yourself a big chance. Even though you can’t see every step of the way, as you move towards your goals, the way opens up. If you haven’t moved in a long time, it’s a major event in your life, but having been there many times before and I will be looking out for you. Trust that I know the way to get you there.

4. Get informed. Feeling a bit out of control is one thing you’ll probably feel during this transition time; it’s understandable. It feels like everyone else has taken over your life. The seller, your lender, the appraiser, the inspectors, they all have the power to say yes or no to your moving plans. Don’t be afraid to ask questions constantly of your agent. A good agent will provide updates and information without being asked.

5. Plan B? When things don’t go as smoothly as you had hoped, don’t let emotions take over. Ask yourself “What are my options?” because there are always options. Let’s pretend the lender takes longer than agreed upon to get your loan. He keeps asking you for more and more documentation until it feels like he also needs to know how many hairs you have on your head! You feel upset because you wanted to feel certain about the move and now you still have to live with the uncertainty. First instinct is to throw up your hands and say: “Forget it, I’m fed up with this!” But what is your option? Find a new lender and start the process over again? That may take weeks, plus you will have to provide all the paperwork all over again. If the lender is trying his best, it may be better to give him a few more days. Each case is unique of course, but when setbacks occur we’ve found that asking yourself this question helps to defuse the situation and restore clear headed thinking.

6. Seek distraction. Sometimes there’s nothing you can do about the situation, so take your mind off of it altogether. Maybe you expected loan approval on Thursday, but now it won’t come until Monday. You hate being in limbo and feeling powerless. So do something completely off subject, maybe something where you aren’t powerless. Take a hike, play golf, get out of town for the day, watch a movie, or pour yourself into your work. Dwell on something else instead and just take it one day at a time.


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