How to navigate long-distance house-hunting in Florida
If you intend to move to Florida soon, chances are you will want to check out the home first. However, sometimes doing so in person isn’t the most practical thing to do. Luckily, going through almost every step of purchasing a home online is entirely possible. We have prepared tips on how to navigate long-distance house-hunting in Florida to help you on your mission.
Tips for long-distance house-hunting in Florida
Looking for a new home is an exciting process, and long-distance house-hunting doesn’t have to take away from that excitement. Thousands of people purchase their houses from afar every single day. All you need to do is familiarize yourself with the area and seize the help of a skilled realtor to advise you along the way. Following these tips should make your Florida house hunt a big success.
Make a Wishlist
Before you start house-hunting, you need to know what you are searching for. You should define your goals, set realistic expectations, and determine what your non-negotiables are. Your agent can take a list of your demands and carefully curate a selection of houses for you to check out, saving you time and effort. This way, it will be easier for both you and your realtor to find a perfect Florida home for you.
Do your Research
Research is essential when starting any project, but it is crucial when planning a relocation. Especially if you are doing a long-distance house-hunt. Your realtor can help you with many things, but you need to cover the basics first.
You should get familiar with the place you want to move to, including the cost of living, the housing market, education opportunities, job market, crime rates, and livability scores. Get insider info on the neighborhoods – there are many forums online that cover these topics.
If you already know the general area you are interested in, you can use Google Maps to look over the surroundings and make sure this is the right place for you.
Thankfully, with the advance of technology, you can browse properties online and find an ideal one for yourself, all from the warmth of your current home.
Investigate the market
After you do your research and settle on an area, you will want to thoroughly investigate the market. Calculating the average price per square foot for home sales in the area is an excellent place to start. Here are some resources that can help you with this:
- Your local real estate agent
- Property management companies
- Online listing databases
- The county assessor website
You can also find comparable properties – homes in the neighborhood that have sold within the last few months and homes currently on the market. This will give you a ballpark of prices and an insight into what to expect. However, remember that comps are only as good as the data. An experienced realtor will know the streets and properties much more intimately than a mathematical equation.
Plan a budget
Your budget will probably be a deciding factor when buying a home in Florida. First of all, you need to determine the amount you want to spend. You should take into account that, in addition to the price you pay for when buying a property, there are additional costs. This includes property taxes and various other fees. Maybe you want a beachside property, but those tend to be in a special price range, which also needs to be considered beforehand. Remember, having a clear view of your finances will determine the success of your house hunt.
Even though you can do a lot (almost everything) online, if you are investing a lot of money and starting a life somewhere, there is a strong possibility you will want to see the property. Touring the house at least once is something that you should aim for in this scenario. Thus, the travel expenses also need to be calculated in your budget. You can put aside a budget for this – include transportation, a place to stay while touring, and miscellaneous expenses.
Hire an experienced realtor
The value of an experienced realtor is immeasurable, particularly in these circumstances. It is about having someone you can trust, someone who understands the market and wants to help you get your dream home. A good local realtor knows all about market values, communities, schools – everything you need to know before settling for a home. It would be best to research yourself, but having a skilled professional helping you is more than half the work. They will be your best on-the-ground resource – your eyes and ears, so to say.
Think about the logistics
Once you navigate long-distance house-hunting in Florida and choose a home, it’s time to prepare for the actual move. Long-distance moves can be a real hassle, so it’s usually best to hire professionals who will help with the whole process. Finding the right long-distance movers is imperative if you want to have some peace of mind. Besides picking the movers, you will also need to check the administrative requirements, get price quotes, make travel arrangements, etc.
Make your beachside property in Sarasota presentable to re-sell it
Staging is another term you’re sure to get very familiar with while re-selling beachside properties. Technically, you can simply put your home on the market as is and hope for the best. Nevertheless, more often than not, people tend to purchase a house that shows them a particular lifestyle and agrees with what they’re trying to achieve. You can invest in your property and renovate it and actually profit significantly because of it. Don’t miss up on this opportunity simply because you don’t want to put in some effort.
If you are still nervous about making an offer without seeing the house first, remember that you can always rent before you buy. There is also a possibility of adding a clause in the contract that states the sale is contingent on the buyer seeing the property. You can be safe and still get your dream home. Hopefully, our tips have made it a bit easier to navigate long-distance house-hunting in Florida. Good luck, and welcome to the Sunshine State!
Header: Creator: Tracey C. Higginbotham II