First-time Home Buyer Tips

The process of buying a home becomes much less scary when you take the leap informed and knowledgeable. We’ve put together some handy tips for first-time home buyers to make life easier and the home buying process-enjoyable itself. Before you start this journey, ask yourself a few questions: are you going to have kids? Do you have any elderly relatives you’ll be taking care of? Are you going to sell your home in a few years? Shortly – just think long-term and think re-sale! This will help you to choose the right home type, the best location and consider any further money loss when it comes to selling your home. If you’re ready for the challenge just make sure to do a little homework to resolve issues that you might face when buying your first home. There are plenty of valuable tips for first-time home buyers, and you may easily find them on Google. So, we are not going to simply repeat them. We’ll list some personally learned lessons below.

Choose the right home type

When buying a home you should think about what you need over what you want. There are several options for home type: a single-family home, a condo, a multi-family property or a townhouse. Depending on your housing needs, you’ll have to choose one that best suits you. Take your time to do some research and find all the pros and cons of each option. Buying a home is not buying a new smartphone or a new pair of shoes. You’ll perhaps make the biggest purchase of your life. So don’t hurry and find the home that is really best for you. Make a list of what you need and what features you want your ideal home to have. The list may include home size, number of rooms to such small details like kitchen layout or the color of walls.

How many houses you can afford

Budgeting is the key when it comes to buying a home. The most important thing to bear in mind is whether you can really afford to become a homeowner and how many houses you can actually afford. You should first make a budget before you start looking for a house. It’s really great to have your financing in place. Remember the rule of thumb – you should be able to afford a mortgage three times your income. Also, be ready to provide more documents when applying for a mortgage.  Ask any top realtor and they will tell you how important it is to get a mortgage pre-approval.

Consider ALL expenses of buying a home

Well, now you know a bit more about the home buying process, and it’s time to go even deeper. Not only the monthly payments are important, but you should consider several extra expenses. Maybe you’ll need someone to help you with the down payment. Think this over and make up your mind if you don’t have money put aside. Keep in mind that home ownership brings you more expenses. When you were renting you could just take the phone and ask the homeowner to come and fix any damage. Now you’ll have to do it yourself. Think about utility bills, home ownership taxes, and insurance payments. Don’t forget to have the home inspected before you buy it. They say you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover. The same is right for a house. Take a close look at every detail. Maybe you’re really happy with a home and you’ll just need to do a few upgrades. Only after budgeting all of these expenses see if you still can afford a house.

The Buying Process

After the above-mentioned steps, you’re now getting into the buying process itself. Find your dream home by searching for online listings and maybe driving around the places you’re interested in. Make sure to find the best neighborhood for you. Consider choosing particular streets you want to be close to or you prefer to avoid. The location is really very important when buying a home. The good location will also add value to your home when you decide to sell it in the future. When you eventually find the best home, make an offer. Here you’ll need professional help to decide how much money you should offer for the house. It’s important to understand the competition in order not to overpay. As we already mentioned, you’ll also need a home inspection. After you have the seller make any repairs or discount, you can think about closing the deal.      

Closing the deal

It turns to be the last and the most stressful part of buying a home. When closing the deal you’ll have to sign tons of documents. Be extremely careful and prepare each and every sheet of paper. Be sure to understand all the terms of your contract. Ask your agent or mortgage broker to explain to you any detail you haven’t understood. The loan documents could be 100 pages long. Don’t fall under pressure and don’t sign them without reading first. Oops, now and on you’re not a renter anymore. Say goodbye to your rental only after you have the keys. Also, consider how long it may take you to move. Maybe you need to do some repairs and remodels before moving in. Finally, be sure to keep some cash on hand to pay for unexpected expenses that may come your way.

By: Hermine Aslanyan

Additional Resources:

Top 10 Frequently Asked Questions Regarding Mortgages by Kyle Hiscock


6 Tips for Avoiding Home Buyer’s Remorse by Ferris Property Group

Single Woman’s Guide To a Mortgage-Worthy Credit Profile by Madison Blancaflor

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2 thoughts on “First-time Home Buyer Tips

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