Buying a home for the first time doesn’t have to be daunting. First-time homebuyers need to ask the right questions to have a relatively smooth experience.
The vital questions below will help you carefully consider your home options:
Am I realistic with the budget?
While a budget can be an automatic or even obvious consideration, first-time homebuyers need to go into specific details.
For instance, if the home you’re considering has a high price tag, can your income sustain high monthly payments consistently? And would you be able to save enough for a down payment? These are just some of the finer details that must be top of mind when searching for homes.
This is important because when taking into consideration all expenses, homebuyers need to be very specific on the monthly mortgage payment they can afford to shell out. Failing to account for $200 or less can significantly affect your decision to choose one home over another.
Are my home options strategically located?
Whether it’s a new home development by a well-known developer or an established community, homebuyers need to ensure houses are in a strategic location.
Is it close to excellent schools (if you have kids), the office, or grocery stores? Are there noisy neighbors in the area? You can find a home you’ll fall in love with right from the get-go, but if convenience is lacking, you might soon regret the decision.
Before pushing through with a home, make sure you’ve had the chance to check out the area. Walk around the neighborhood to see what the vibe is like. Do this on a weekend and a weekday.
Additionally, try commuting to and from work. See if the distance is just bearable and if there are enough public transportation options.
Is a real estate agent essential?
Hiring the services of a real agent can be crucial, especially for first-time homebuyers. It can mean the difference between landing a good deal or one that leaves you with the shorter end of the stick.
You might find yourself in tricky negotiating situations. For instance, if you find a home that fits most of your needs, but it needs some significant repairs, you’ll most likely prefer for the seller to take care of the repair costs.
However, sellers find ways to negotiate themselves out of it. And on top of that, they can ask you to cover closing costs as well. Having a buyer’s agent by your side can help you prepare for that kind of scenario.
How should I prepare for house tours?
To start, avoid getting distracted by attention-grabbing pieces like expensive appliances and designer furniture. Be ready with a short or comprehensive list which details what you’re looking for in a home.
You can use this list to help you visualize yourself living in a particular house. A small living room that doesn’t meet the needs of your big family or a bathroom that has plumbing problems are things you should look out for. Zero in on observations that can be deal-breakers.