Viewing a Home

When is the Best Time to Start Viewing Houses?

What this article covers

  • Factors to consider when you decide to start viewing properties
  • How to approach real estate agents when viewing properties

It’s never too early to start viewing houses. The earlier you start viewing, the more you can educate yourself on what to look for when you are in a position to offer on a house. That said, there are a couple of potential risks if you start viewing too early. Here are a few things to consider.

Estate agents taking you seriously

Some real estate agents will start taking you less seriously if they become aware that you aren’t ready to make an offer. This will become more obvious if you don’t make a single offer while viewing a countless number of houses. Every viewing an estate agent does costs money and time. You don’t want to be at a point where the estate agent pushes you to the back of queue or doesn’t share with you off-market viewings by the time you are ready to make an offer on an ideal house.

Falling in love with a house

It’s inevitable for some home buyers to find their “dream” home too early on in the process. This could set unrealistic expectations by the time the buyer is ready to make offers. The buyer may continue to think back to the “dream” house they missed out on and use it as a point of comparison for every new viewing they go to. It’s an unwritten rule. Don’t ever fall in love with a house!

When is the right time to view houses?

There is no right answer. Do what is best for your situation. Ideally, you should be upfront about your position when you speak to the estate agents. Some won’t mind showing you homes early on as situations can change overnight. For example, home buyers that are part of a chain may find that they are able to get an offer on their own home more quickly than anticipated, especially if they live in a popular market.

Just be aware that some real estate agents may have a pre-qualification step before they allow any potential buyers to view houses. They may, for example, request buyers to show an agreement in principle (AIP) if a mortgage is needed for the purchase.

Published on | Last updated on 10/01/2023

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