Buying a home is always exciting, but it can also be pretty stressful. Whether you’re looking to buy your first home or if you’re looking to upgrade to a home that’s a better fit for your needs and lifestyle, there’s a lot to choose from here!
There are a lot of different kinds of homes for sale in Katy, TX, which is great because it means that there are a lot of different opportunities for people who want to make their homes in this fantastic community.
Located on the outskirts of the Houston metro area, there are lots of jobs and cultural opportunities just around the block here. Plus, we’re far enough outside the metro area that you can enjoy the best of Texas outdoor living from the comforts of your home community.
Here’s what you need to know about shopping for homes for sale in Katy, TX, what the process looks like, and how to find a real estate agent that can help you find the right home for you and your family.
What Does House Buying Look Like?
There are a few things you need to know about buying homes. The most important thing is making sure you’re financially ready to buy a home and that you’ll be able to qualify for a mortgage.
Mortgage pre-approval can be a key way you can boost your home offers and make it more likely that your offer will be chosen even if a seller has more than one interested buyer.
There are a lot of things involved in being, and proving, that you are financially ready to buy a home.
Proving your financial readiness has a lot of steps, so it’s a good idea to get started as soon as possible. Paying down debts to lower your debt-to-income ratio and saving for a down payment are good first steps.
Remember that buying a home can be a competitive market, and since Houston is a big business center for the whole country, houses tend to be bigger and more luxurious (and costly) than average here. That said, we also benefit from Houston’s lower-than-average housing prices, which means that homes are a good deal and there are some affordable housing options in most communities.
It’s important to make sure your credit is in good shape before you start looking for a mortgage here. For reference, most lenders in the Houston area are looking for a credit score around 620, and better is always a good thing. There are some options for people with lower credit scores, but you may have to deal with higher interest rates, less favorable loans, or offer a larger down payment to secure a mortgage.
Once you’re financially ready it’s important to get a realtor that can help you look for homes. Because Katy is a competitive market there may be plenty of houses for sale in the area that are overpriced for what you get, or that are priced low to help mask potential problems. Your realtor will be able to see through those tricks to find a home that’s a good fit for your needs, budget, and willingness to repair problems.
From there, it’s a matter of narrowing down what parts of Katy you’re most interested in, what kind of home you’re looking for (building style, number of bedrooms/bathrooms, included amenities, etc), and then starting your search.
Normally homes sell pretty quickly, so you should be prepared to move fast once you’ve found something. Don’t wait to see if the next house on your list is a good fit before filing paperwork. Your realtor might even suggest making several offers on different properties until one of your offers is accepted, at which point you can withdraw the others.
What Should I Look For When Searching For Homes For Sale Near Houston
There are a lot of things to think about when you’re considering which homes for sale are likely to be a good fit for your needs. We’re going to cover a lot of ground here, but remember to check in with what you really want and are likely to need in your home. Some of the things that make sense for a lot of other Katy residents might not be what you’re looking for, and you might need some things other residents in the area are less motivated by.
One of the most commonly overlooked features of a home is its accessibility. Think about your whole family. Are you likely to have elderly relatives living with you in the future? Will they be able to navigate a home safely and easily? Do you have disabled relatives or people who need specific accommodations like a single-story home to be safe?
How Many Bedrooms/Offices Do You Need
Right now a lot of homes are being built or renovated around the idea of open-concept homes, but that can actually interfere with some of the features people need.
Do you have a large family that needs a lot of bedrooms? What about people who work from home? Are office and den spaces places where you need to be isolated from the noise of the rest of the house to meet job requirements or make it easier to focus on work and hobbies?
If you don’t need those things, do you prefer an open concept house with more usable space and fewer bedrooms and offices set aside?
Most new homeowners think that shared bathrooms will be easier to manage than they really are. Think about how many bathrooms your family realistically needs, especially if you have teenagers in the home that are prone to long showers!
Also, think about how many bathrooms need to be full bathrooms, and how many could potentially be half or ¾ bathrooms. The fewer bathroom appliances you really need, the easier it may be to find a home that fits your requirements.
Backyard amenities are another place where new homeowners often think that they’ll just build what they want, from new fences to sheds and pools. The problem is that most people also underestimate the cost of those improvements and don’t plan for the potentially thousands of dollars spent on those upgrades.
Think about what you want (or don’t want) in your backyard ahead of time. That will help you narrow down the list of homes for sale that are interesting and a good fit.
Air conditioning is a must for basically all of Texas! It’s a good idea to ask about how the AC works when it was last inspected/updated/or repaired, and to pay for an HVAC system inspection in addition to your other home inspections.
This is important because AC can be expensive, both to install and to repair. Even if your home’s AC isn’t in perfect condition you still want to know because then you can plan for repairs and figure out how to make it happen.
How To Find A Real Estate Agency That Best Suits Your Needs
Getting a real estate agent can be difficult, but it’s worth the effort. You don’t just want to work with anyone, either. You want to work with a qualified agent that is going to put your needs and interests first throughout the process, and who makes things as easy as possible.
It’s also important to make sure you’re comfortable with your real estate agent. You should feel like you can tell them what you’re looking for without judgment, and that you’re free to ask whatever questions you need to throughout the process.
You also want a real estate agent that’s familiar with the kinds of homes and neighborhoods you’re interested in. The more familiar they are with the homes and neighborhoods in an area, the better fit they’re likely to find for you. Just as importantly, a real estate agent that frequently works in your chosen area is more likely to have the connections and information they need to land deals and find good homes as soon as they hit the market.
It’s okay to talk to more than one agent and more than one agency if you need to find the right fit. Really, you should be excited to work with your real estate agent and to see what they’re offering for potential homes.
If after the first few homes a real estate agent shows you, you aren’t excited or just don’t think those homes are a good fit, it may be time to talk to them about recalibrating what they’re looking for. If that still doesn’t work it’s okay to say that you think you’d better work with someone else.
In a real estate agency, your previous agent may even recommend people that they think might be a good fit in the agency depending on what you’re looking for and the expertise of the agents there.
A Premier Real Estate Agency That Can Find Your Perfect Home
Looking for a real estate agency to get started looking for your dream home in Katy, TX?
We’ve got you covered.
Teifke Real Estate has an experienced team of real estate agents that are all eager to help you find the home of your dreams. Our real estate agents are trained to listen to your wants and needs, set reasonable expectations for your budget, and come up with fantastic homes all over Texas.
When you work with us our only goal is to make sure you get to buy a home you’re going to love for years to come.
See what makes Teifke Real Estate one of the Premier Real Estate Agencies in Texas. Contact us to get started on your home-buying journey!