You’re excited and ready to purchase your first home but you must remain vigilant and cautious so that you won’t fall victim to some of the common mistakes made by new buyers like yourself. Purchasing a home is one of the largest investments that you’ll make in your lifetime so naturally you will be nervous and more apt to make mistakes that are driven by your emotions instead of your budget. Let’s look at some common mistakes you should avoid when looking for your first home.
- Don’t rush into anything. It’s important not to rush into what you think is a great deal only to suffer buyer’s remorse once the paperwork has been signed. Don’t every worry about missing the house of your dreams in an active market; instead, breathe slowly, consider your options, and remember the budget within which you are shopping. This will help you to save money, avoid buying a house that you can’t afford, and will help you to find the perfect home for you and your family.
- Know your options for a mortgage. It will be very helpful to qualify for a mortgage before you begin shopping for your dream home. It’s also important to gain knowledge about the different types of mortgages and the attractive features for which you may qualify. Once you are qualified you will be able to choose homes that meet your criteria but that fall within your price range. It’s always a good idea to know what you can afford and have a solid budget in mind before you even begin to look for properties to look at.
- What about the down payment? If you find a home that requires a low down payment or nothing at all, this could mean financial disaster for you. The down payment you place at the time of purchase will lower your payment over the life of your mortgage; professionals recommend that you have at least 20% of the price of the home that you want readily available for your down payment.
- Do you have an emergency fund? Having enough savings on hand to cover at least six months of your bills is a wise approach to financial stability. Companies who advertise, “we buy houses” have seen the emergencies that have arisen that cause homeowners to sell their homes quickly and can attest to the peace of mind and confidence you will have if you take actions to save money to cover any unforeseen circumstances that can impact your budget. With an emergency fund you can avoid putting home repairs on costly credit cards that place you in financial jeopardy if you haven’t properly planned for emergencies.
- Consider the cost of operating your new home. Many new homeowners don’t think about the costs associated with running a new home. You will have maintenance costs, taxes, homeowners’ insurance, and higher utilities than you had in your smaller home or apartment. Look for a mortgage payment that is lower than what you now pay for rent so that you can live comfortably and within your financial means.
Buying a home is a large investment for anyone so it’s vital that you make a confident decision that brings years of happiness with no buyers remorse. We