Preparing to Buy Your Second Home

There’s loads of advice out there for first-time homebuyers. Which makes sense, of course, because jumping into the real estate market for the first time can be intimidating. But what about second-time homebuyers? Let’s face it – you didn’t suddenly become an expert after buying your first home. In fact, buying your second home can present new challenges you didn’t even have to think about the first time around. If you’re preparing to be a second-time homebuyer, then here’s what you need to know.

Get clear on what you want

This advice is often given to first-time homebuyers, but it applies to those shopping for their second homes, too. Figure out what you’re looking for in a home. Most likely your needs have changed since you bought your first house. Since the pandemic, many people need more space to work from home or to attend virtual classes. Make of list of your needs and wants so that you can search for a North County home that fits within those parameters.

Decide what to do with house #1

One of the biggest challenges you’ll face as a second-time homebuyer in North County San Diego is figuring out what to do with your first home. Do you sell it at the same time you’re trying to buy a new one? While that would be ideal, it also means trying to navigate not just one, but two real estate transactions at the same time. Should you wait to sell your first home until after you’ve closed on your new one? That can help to alleviate stress – but it also means that you’ll be shouldering two mortgage payments for a few months or more. Can you afford that? Or have you thought about renting out your first home? That can be a good choice, too, but make sure you know what goes into being a landlord. If you have questions, then working with one of our professionals can help you make a decision. But remember – we’re in a sellers’ market, so now is a great time to list.

Figure out your down payment

Many second-time homebuyers use the money they make on the sale of their first home to finance the down payment on their next home. But that may not work for you if you won’t be selling at the same time that you’re buying. Make sure you have a plan figured out for how you will save the money for your down payment. And remember that you’ll be paying PMI (private mortgage insurance) if your down payment is less than 20 percent.

Think about the future

As we’ve all learned in 2020, things can change in ways that we hadn’t even considered. Even if you think you’ll be in your second home for the remainder of your life, you should still consider its resale value. Down the line, you may decide to sell and you want to ensure that you’ll get a great return on your investment. Luckily, homes in North County San Diego are very desirable!

Work with a professional

One of the best pieces of advice we can give is to work with a professional when you’re buying your second home. Contact the experts at the Cristine Clark & Jamie Gilman Team at 760-758-1211 or [email protected]. We’d love to talk about all your real estate needs and help you find the second home of your dreams!

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