House shopping can be a very exciting time, especially if you’re about to be a first-time homeowner. There’s a lot to consider when house shopping to ensure you pick the right home for you and your family. After all, this is a big investment that can have an impact on your life and quality of life for years to come. Here are some common mistakes that house hunters encounter and how you can avoid falling into the same holes.
Neglecting to do Sufficient Research
When considering houses, understand as much as you can about the neighborhood. Do you have children? If so, picking a home in a good school district is important. Research crime in and around the area, distance from essential places such as work, school, the grocery store, the nearest gas station, and/or public transit. This is also a good time to get pre-approved for any loans and understand your personal finances prior to choosing houses to view.
Going Above Budget
After you’ve taken into consideration your current financial situation and discussed how much a bank is willing to loan, stick to viewing houses within that price range. A major mistake that many shoppers make is going above budget and having financial problems later on. Don’t get tempted. The amount a bank is willing to lend you is usually proportionate to how well you’ll be able to repay the loan. Going above this can put a strain on your finances and affect your future circumstances. Here is a great article on how to keep this from happening.
Choosing a Home Based on Emotion
It’s human nature to fall in love with a beautiful house. It happens to the best of us. Don’t let a real estate agent play with your emotions and coax you into buying a house you can’t afford. It’s also important to be practical about the house, even if your dream home seems to be within budget. Make sure it’s up to standard and inspect the house thoroughly before allowing yourself to become attached to the home. Real estate agents are very good at what they do and can make a dud look like a stud, especially when you show them real interest and love for the house.
Not Having a Professional Inspection
Even if you’ve done a thorough walkthrough of your potential home, it is strongly advised that you hire a professional to give the house a once over before committing to buy. These inspectors are trained to find faults, so you may be surprised by how many they come up with. There will likely be a lot of minor faults, but don’t brush them off too nonchalantly because these costs add up. Make sure the costs of any repairs are worth it for you.
Underestimating Actual Costs
There are more costs involved when buying a house than just the actual retail price. There are acquisition costs, loan application fees, mortgage insurance, moving costs, unexpected repairs (use a professional like Park Place Construction for repairs), and so much more. Be sure to budget for any additional fees and have some money set aside for renovations that might pop up once you move in. There are also costs of home decor, appliances, and everything else you are going to purchase to settle into your home.
Now that you know what to look out for, don’t become a victim of common mistakes many home buyers make. Have fun looking at potential houses, but also keep an eye out and make sure you do all of the work necessary to have a smooth buying experience and end up with a home you love. Keep an eye on those real estate agents. They really will have you signing on the dotted line before you know it if you’re not careful!