Purchasing your first home can be an overwhelming process. In fact, some have said it’s the scariest thing they’ve ever done. Buying a home is often the largest purchase in a lifetime, and several people avoid purchasing a home due to their fears of costly expenses.
However, buying a home isn’t as scary as many people make it out to be. Follow these tips if you’re thinking about making the big move from tenant to home owner:
1) Think About Down Payment
You might be dreading those two words, but it’s something you’ll need to think about when it comes to purchasing your first home. Think about how much money you want to set aside for your down payment, and how much home you can afford. Start considering your down payment options. Figuring out your down payment options, and how much you can afford, gives you a ballpark range on how much money you’ll need to borrow from a mortgage lender.
2. Postpone New Credit Activity
If you’re thinking about taking out a new credit card the same time you’re considering getting a new house – it’s not the best idea. Mortgage lenders run hard inquires on personal finances, and run an in-depth credit report. Avoid opening a new credit card until after the home buying process, to avoid your credit score dipping low.
3. Location, Location, Location
Figure out where you want to live. Consider local property tax, and home owners insurance options. Learn about the area you’re considering moving into – is it high in crime, is it a flood zone, does it have a good school system? These are all questions and considerations to weigh when looking to purchase a new home.
Working with a real estate agent is always a good idea when looking for your first home. Agents often know a large amount of information about areas, neighborhoods, and school systems. They also can help you find the ideal home to fit your needs.
4. Be Prepared to Compromise
Find a perfect home from roof to basement (or lack-thereof) is rare, so consider different compromises you’ll need to make when purchasing home. Will you need to take down the disgusting red wallpaper in the dining room, or install a new refrigerator? Sometimes you need to put in a little elbow grease (or spend some extra cash) to achieve your dream home. It’s important to find out what work you will need to put into a house before you make an offer on it.
Lastly, be excited. This is a huge step you’re taking, and while it might be a bit intimidating, there any many useful sources around to help you out.