Yesterday I wrote the latest post in which I laid out a fairly clear, decisive plan if you’re a Canadian looking to purchase real estate in Phoenix or elsewhere in the United States. And in truth, the idea of setting some parameters which, if met, would signal the time to purchase applies to everyone.
The post was direct and with purpose – the truth about someday, as in “we’re thinking about buying a home somewhere down the line,” is someday never comes.
When you’re purchase is framed in terms of someday, there always will be a reason not to purchase preventing you from pulling the trigger – an interest rate higher than what it had been a couple of months earlier, fear that the market will continue to fall, remorse that the bottom finally arrived and now prices are moving higher (not happening yet, by the way, but mentioned for point of illustration), the economy’s iffy, the economy can’t sustain itself, and so on and so on and so on.
And you know what? That line of thinking is perfectly fine as long as you’re aware that you’re probably not going to buy. That’s fine. You’re allowed.
But if you really do want to purchase a home, whether as a first-time buyer looking at a bank owned home or as a Canadian or retiree looking for a second home, you need to decide what “the right time” will look like:
- Where will interest rates need to be?
- Where will prices need to be? (Note: this is a specific number, not the ubiquitous and nebulous “when we hit bottom” because you’ll not know the bottom until it’s gone.)
- What will I need to have saved?
- What do I want to see from the economy?
- If you’re Canadian, what will the exchange rate be?
If you’re answer is “better”, ask yourself what “better” means. And keep asking until you come up with a specific answer.
For instance, let’s say you did this exercise a few weeks back when interest rates were in the low fives and you decided you wanted a rate less than five. Guess what? We’re there at the moment. If you’re waiting for “better”, what will that look like? And will you be ready if and when it happens?
The same goes for the exchange rate. Clearly 79 cents isn’t good so let’s say you want better. You need to know what that number is. 85 cents would be quite a bit better. If you’re holding out for 90 cents, it may or may not happen, but if it does will you be ready?
My entire point is that all of us ought to have honest conversations with ourselves. If you just want to look at pictures of homes, that’s fine with me. I have plenty of pictures for you to view. But if you really want to purchase when the timing’s right, take a few minutes and sit down now to decide what “right” really will mean.
That’s the only way you’ll be ready when the moment strikes.
[tags]Phoenix real estate[/tags]