The home buying process is complex and often times a tricky endeavor.  When buying a luxury home, do not assume the process will resemble that of lower-priced homes, just magnified.

While the buying process has its similarities with your average home, it also has some different aspects to it that will need to be dealt with.

As with any real estate investment, preparation is the key to a successful transaction.  Failure to take a higher priced property seriously will only hurt your chances of a successful purchase.

Here are steps you should take to prepare yourself for buying a luxury property:

Know what you need

Determining and understanding what you want your property to have is one of the most crucial parts of buying a luxury home. Before you even start house hunting, make a list of your needs and wants. Depending on your exact budget, you might be able to get everything you want.  If you’re paying big money for your new luxury home, you want to make sure it’s money well spent and you are getting everything that you need.

Luxury homes tend to be very unique, so finding that right house that meets all your needs could take some time, but it’s out there.

Know what you can afford

Knowing what you qualify for is a big part of buying a luxury home. Don’t assume that you qualify for a multi-million dollar estate because a high percentage of people don’t.

Obtain your pre-qualification letter, or determine exactly how much cash you have to spend. Since luxury homes and waterfront properties often fall into the jumbo loan category, lenders will only consider very qualified buyers. Keep in mind, pre-qualification can take longer on hefty loans, and they are much more intensive.

Find out what you’re comfortable with in terms of financing and stick to it.

Hire a Luxury Real Estate Agent

Hiring a real estate agent who has experience with luxury homes will help you immensely.  A great agent will ensure you stay within your budget and help you execute according to the plan you developed.

Most single-family home agents will not be aware of all the variables that buying a waterfront space or 6,000 sq. ft. of living space can bring to the table.  Working with an agent who has experience with high priced real estate will help you through the complex process.

Get to Know Different Neighborhoods

Location is the most important factor when looking for a house. Think about the type of amenities you want, whether it’s being close to downtown, on a waterfront, or backing onto a golf course.

When buying a luxury home, it’s far more important to keep future plans in mind.  For instance, if you are investing in a waterfront property you don’t want to buy a home on the beach only to learn that they are building another house that will end up blocking your view. This is something you need to be careful of when searching for luxury homes because your resale opportunity would be hurt.

By understanding the local trends in the neighborhood, the future plans for that location, and the type of local amenities you’re searching for, you will have a much better understanding of what location is best for your luxury home.

Amenities

Knowing your priorities in a luxury home will help you find an estate you will love.  It’s common for luxury homes to include incredible locations, breathtaking views, movie theaters, home gyms, land, top of the line appliances and security features.

When buying luxury real estate make sure you have a clear understanding of what you’re looking for.

One last note, patience is generally required when you’re in the market for a luxury home.  Buyers a typically looking for specific requests and with such a large financial investment it’s important to not make a hasty decision.

Educating yourself on the high-end real estate buying process, understanding the local neighborhood trends, and knowing exactly what you’re looking for is going to help you find the best luxury estate possible.