After you’ve signed on the dotted line...Buyer's Remorse
Congratulations, you bought a Berkshires property! That’s something to celebrate…right? Right?! Well, unfortunately, not every buyer feels like popping bubbly after they’ve closed on their Berkshires residence. “The grass is always greener” mentality may set in right after you shake hands with the sellers and part ways. Or right after you have made an offer on that Berkshire land or residence. Maybe it’s after the chandelier has dulled its shine, or the fireplace has lost its spark. Whatever the cause, second thoughts are so common that it they have become known as “Home Buyer’s Remorse”. So, what to do if you’ve signed the dotted line but wish you hadn’t? We have some ideas for you.
First thing’s first: trust your gut. Go back to your checklist of “must-haves” you drew up when you began your search. for a home in the Berkshires Does the house still meet each requirement? You chose it for a reason and you felt strongly enough to invest in this specific home. Give it some credit! Its charms won you over before so give it time to let it do so again.
Next, be forward-focused. There’s no easy exit plan for Home Buyer’s Remorse so why not make take control? What areas in the house are keeping it from being a home run? What do it yourself projects can you do on a rainy day to refresh your excitement? What positive associations can you make with the “cons”? Maybe the squeaky staircase reminds you of your childhood home or the kitchen reignites your culinary passions. Be creative with your projects! Think about your previous homes and what you loved most about them. What changes can you make to include these endearing quirks in your new Stockbridge MA home or condo?
Maybe the regret isn’t so much about the Lenox house but about the price. Sometimes family and friends don’t hesitate to question your decisions and when it comes to a decision with such a large price tag (Berkshires second home) it’s understandable that it may come with buyer’s remorse. This one – while unfortunate and tough to settle with – doesn’t really come with an option other than to move on.
You made the deposits and have signed on your Berkshires purchase and sale contract. You owe what you owe and you spent what you spent. If you’re worried about money, be extra cognizant about expenses going forward. Host a fun make your own pizza party at home instead of ordering out next Friday. Visit your local library instead of buying that brand-new hardcover. These price tags are insignificant to that of your house but they sure do add up. Download a money saving app to help you budget and even count loose change! Cutting back here and there won’t significantly impact your lifestyle but it can significantly help your wallet.
Buyer’s Remorse is surmountable. The second-guessing and feeling of “what ifs” are natural when making such a big decision such as buying a house. Feel them, understand them, accept them, and learn from them.
When the time comes to look for a new house, remember this feeling and take measures to prevent a repeat experience. So what preventative measures can be taken? Plenty! First things first: make two lists. One list for “needs” and another for “wants”. It will construct a strong base of confidence and clarity if you are realistic with what is a must-have and what would be great to have but not essential.
After you’ve created your two lists, find the right agent! Transparency, knowledge, accessibility, and trustworthiness are four important qualities in a real estate agent. They are the experts so look for one who gives straightforward, honest advice. Do your research. Which agents have been in the area the longest? Read reviews, ask questions, don’t settle. Set up meetings you’re your “finalists” and take note of who seems like the right fit for you. Buying a house shouldn’t be expected to be a quick and easy process. Expect it to take time, energy, and to lose a few hairs along the way. It’s a big decision and shouldn’t be taken lightly. No pain, no gain, right?
Some additional measures can be taken to minimize the likelihood of buyer’s remorse. For example, once you decide to make an offer on a house, decrease your frequency of viewing other homes. Don’t put all your eggs in one basket, but be extra vigilant about the houses you see while in talks about another house. If you find one that you think is a better choice than the one you are currently pursuing, triple-check your lists! Make sure it’s absolutely worth the change and even try to imagine yourself after closing…which house would you wish you were in?
Once you’re in contract, make sure you stay involved and up-to-date through all stages. Make sure you know what the costs are and when they are due. Make sure you’ve exhausted all research on which insurance plans are best or which financing plans make the most sense for you. Also, be aware of cancellation clause options. Ask your realtor, look online, talk with experienced friends and family.
In summation, buying a house takes time, energy, and significant thought. Avoiding the nitty-gritty is not only unlikely but also counterproductive. Know the house you’re investing in and understand what you’re spending your hard-earned money on. The process will have its up and downs but once you’ve signed on the dotted line, the house is yours so go on and enjoy it!