There are few things more stressful than buying a home. That’s probably why nearly everyone who’s been through the home-buying process is happy to give you some advice. It’s a nice gesture, really. It’s just not always helpful.

The problem is that when you’re talking about something as fluid as the housing market, the rules change quickly. As such, there’s a good chance that any advice you get – no matter how great it was at one point in time – is now outdated.

So now that 2019 is well underway, it’s high time to point out some home-buying advice that once worked but has passed its expiration date.

Wait for Spring

There is no doubt that you’ve heard this piece of advice before. Who wants to move when the temps are low and when there are so few homes on the market? Despite what you’ve been told, this advice is pretty outdated. There’s no need to wait!

Yes, there is more inventory in the spring, but there’s more competition for it, and sellers are more optimistic about getting a higher price then and so less willing to negotiate. Buy when you find the right property that will meet your needs for today and the next 5 to 10 years. When it comes to your dream home, don’t let a small factor like the weather make decisions for you.

Wait for Home Prices to Settle Down a Bit

Likewise, if you live in an area that’s been more of a seller’s market over the past few years, you may have been told to wait until the market settles down. However, that isn’t great advice either because rent is also high. Paying high rent now and hoping that you’ll find a better deal two or three years down the road won’t work. The best advice would be to make a smart buy today for a property that will appreciate over the long term. Entering a volatile home-buying market may sound scary, but it’s important to look at the long-term repercussions of waiting.

New Construction is Always the Best Choice

In the past, buyers have been told that if they have specific wants or needs, new construction was the way to go. It makes sense if you’re hand-picking every finish and knob, it will probably end up being exactly the house you had in mind.

However, as we move forward in 2019, new construction may no longer be your best bet. New construction is slowing nationwide, so while home buyers may have decided to build in order to obtain their dream home last year, 2019 is the year of the renovation.

Now, you should identify homes that – with a bit of work – will meet your needs. You can find a great house, invest just a small amount of time and money, and end up with a place that’s just right for you and your family. The right Real Estate Agent will help you identify properties and help you envision what’s possible.

The American Dream is a House with a White Picket Fence

If you’re ready to settle down into a home – especially if you have a family – you know exactly what you’re supposed to be looking for, according to popular standards. At least three bedrooms in the middle of a nice neighborhood, with large closets, a good-sized yard, and a white picket fence. It’s the American Dream – at least that’s what you’ve been told.

However, that isn’t always possible in today’s market. With low inventory and a competitive market, you have to get creative. Owning a home can take many forms, whether that’s splitting the purchase of a duplex with another couple, buying a townhome near campus that can be rented out down the road, or perhaps a fixer-upper. A first home doesn’t have to have a picket fence, it just needs to be a good financial decision.