As a follow up to our blog the other day about what to expect if you are house hunting in Los Angles in 2018, we wanted to add to that some of the things that, now that you have the basic essentials of the housing market here, you should absolutely not do. 

First and foremost, do not start house hunting if you are not clear about what you want. Make a wish list before you start shopping, because looking at extremely different types of properties will slow down the process. There is nothing wrong with considering your options, but try to narrow them down before you fill your weekends with home tours.

Don't start seeing homes without a mortgage pre-approval. In the hot LA market, almost every seller will be unlikely to entertain an offer without one. A pre-approval also lets you know exactly how much mortgage you qualify for, so that you won’t waste time looking at properties you can’t afford.

Don't wait too long to see a home. In this tight market, if your real estate agent calls you about a new listing, do whatever you can to see it right away. Waiting even a day in this 2018 market can make the difference between getting the house or not.

Don't ignore the neighborhood. Take some time to feel the vibe of the community to make sure it's right for you. Is the neighborhood quiet or bustling? Is it predominately hipster singles or families? Do neighbors seem friendly and likely to gather on their porches in the evenings or do they keep to themselves? Also, check for local shops, restaurants, or parks if these amenities are important to you. And, in LA, especially, check for access to freeways and public transportation.

Don't speed through an open house. You should never be afraid to explore the whole house and property in detail and this includes opening closets and pantry cabinets to check out every nook and cranny, making sure the windows are hanging straight, flipping light switches to check their upkeep and inspecting the floors and the foundation to make sure they are in good shape. Take notes (even if they are just mental) and don't be afraid to flag those things you have concerns about. 

Don't expect perfection. We all have an idea of our dream home, but for most of us it is rare to get exactly everything we want in any area of our lives. So...focus on what is most important to you. The best dream homes are the ones that have the basic foundation of what we were looking for that we then turn into the home we desired through our family dynamics, creativity and just the pure joy of home ownership.