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The complete guide to moving to Northern Virginia

Purchasing real estate is never an easy task, especially in the ultra-hot Northern Virginia market. There is a lot to consider and many decisions to make. It is also a time-consuming process, and of course, there is a financial aspect to take into account.

Purchasing a piece of property is usually one of the most considerable financial investments in a person's life. Therefore, decisions regarding these transactions are not to be made lightly. It is particularly true for first-time homebuyers. But what happens when you are buying a home in Northern Virginia while still living in another state? Even experienced homeowners find this extremely challenging, and there are many reasons why.

The complete guide to buying a home in another state
The complete guide to buying a home in another state

To begin with, viewing properties is not that simple. In addition, the buyer's knowledge of the area might be limited. Visiting the neighborhoods at different times of day is often not an option. And there are other issues, such as traffic. You can't possibly know what your daily commute will look like until you experience it first-hand.

However, there are ways to ensure you make a sound decision and avoid buyer's remorse. This article will give you some valuable tips for purchasing a home out of state.

Hire Professional Help

Buying a house in another state is not a simple transaction. Moving to another state is somewhat easier but far from simple. It almost goes without saying, you have to hire reliable and professional help, and that includes:

  1. A real estate agent (Brad Winkelmann, Arlington Expert :)

  2. A moving company

Find a Real Estate Agent You Can Trust

An agent and a client making notes.
Buying a home in another state is easier with an agent.

Purchasing a property is always easier with an agent. So, you first need to find a real estate agent that can help you. Keep in mind that you need someone who:

  • Has experience assisting buyers from a different state

  • Knows Northern Virginia really ell

  • You feel you can talk to and feel comfortable when you do

You must be picky when looking for the right agent. They will be your eyes and your ears. So, you have to ensure you work with someone who will have your best interests at heart. The agent you work with must show you that they listen to your needs and wants. They must also demonstrate that they understand what type of property you need and the location that would be suitable for you and your family.

To ensure you have chosen the best person for the job, if possible, start with asking friends and family for referrals. Then conduct online research. Find a few options and vet each one. Finally, schedule an interview with a few agents to see how you feel when you talk to them and to get an opportunity to ask them all the questions you want.

For example, make sure you ask them if they cooperate with other professionals whose services you may need, such as:

  • Appraiser

  • House inspector

  • Mortgage lender

  • Moving company

  • Professional cleaning service

Find a Reliable Moving Crew

Moving to another state is easier with a moving company.
Moving to another state is easier with a moving company.

Say you live in North Carolina and want to purchase a home in Northern Virginia. That's decent distance to travel, and not convenient to travel back and forth quickly. You need to transport all of your worldly possessions to a new home and trust these words: you can't do it on your own. You need a company experienced at long-distance moves to ensure you have a simple transfer from NC to VA. Buying a home in another state is complex enough, so make your life easier and hire professionals to handle all the moving logistics. Tip: According to Next Stop Movers, you should have at least three moving quotes.

Know What You Want When Buying a Home in Another State

When purchasing out of state, you must know what kind of home you want.
When purchasing out of state, you must know what kind of home you want.

Having professionals help you buy and move to another state is necessary. But, without explicit instructions from you, they can only do so much.

For an agent to help you, you have to provide them with some crucial information regarding:

  • Neighborhood - If you have kids, you will want a house in a family-friendly area with all the necessary amenities, such as a good school, hospital, sports center, parks, playgrounds, etc. Safety will also be one of the primary concerns. If you are a young professional, you may be looking for a more urban area close to bars, restaurants, and other entertainment options.

  • Location - Besides the type of neighborhood, consider how long you would have to travel to work (big deal in Northern Virginia). If there are any other things you want to be close to, specify that.

  • Size of the house - Consider your current needs as well as your plans. How old are your kids? Will you be expanding your family? This will impact how many rooms and bathrooms you need.

  • Floor plan - Do you prefer an open floor plan or a traditional one? Your family situation will determine this as well. An open floor plan is more practical if you have small kids because you can always oversee them. Similarly, if you entertain a lot, an open floor plan is a better option because you don't want to leave your guests alone or be away from fun while you tend to something in the kitchen.

  • Garden - How important is a garden, and how big do you want it to be?

  • Budget - You have to determine how much you can afford to spend on a house.

All of these and anything else you need will help your agent provide you with the best service. They will know what you want and pick only homes you would be interested in seeing.

Schedule a Visit

Modern technology has made it possible to buy a home out of state without ever seeing it in person. Video tours are an excellent help and something you should ask your agent to organize. However, it is always better to schedule at least one visit. Walk around the neighborhood, have lunch at a nearby restaurant and say hi to the neighbors. Ask them a question or two and get a feel of what life there is like.

A Few Last Considerations

A neighborhood in Northern Virginia
A neighborhood in Northern Virginia

Here are a few more things to do:

  • Organize a house inspection before you make any final decisions

  • Get approved for a mortgage to have the upper hand in case of a bidding war

  • Research the cost of living in the new state

  • Declutter your old home, so you move more efficiently and at a lower cost

Buying a home in another state is a challenge. It is likely to take more time, and there is the issue of not being able to pop in to check something that may be bothering you. There is a lot of unknownes, but nothing is impossible. With a thorough plan and great help, you can do anything.

If you are looking for a Realtor that specializes in Arlington real estate, give me a call. In all honesty, I know the market very well because I have lived here all my life. With me, you can find the real specialized help that you’re looking for. Bonus, I’m pretty social too! Follow me on Facebook @Brad Winkelmann Real Estate Arlington VA, Orange Line Metro.

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