This is a collaborative post.
Buying your first family home is an exciting experience for all the family. Finally, you’ll have somewhere that you can truly call your own and make some amazing memories in with those you love. That being said, it’s quite a stressful process too. Because of this, it’s vital that you do some research and understand what you’re doing before you make any big decisions. With that in mind, here are nine important things you should know before buying your first family home.
Important Things To Know Before Buying Your First Family Home
1. Owning A Home Isn’t Crucial
Everyone dreams of the day they buy their first family home. After all, owning a property comes with a number of benefits, including stability, the freedom to decorate, upgrade, and renovate as you choose, fixed-rate mortgage payments, and tax benefits. That being said, owning a home isn’t always crucial. In fact, in some cases, it makes more sense to stick to renting. Although some people will tell you that renting is a waste of money, it comes with its own advantages, especially for those that move around a lot.
2. Know What You Can Afford
Before you can start to look at houses, or even consider the features you want potential properties to possess, you have to sort out your budget. Buying a home is a costly process, so it’s vital that you can actually afford it. Go through your incomes and monthly expenses and calculate exactly how much you could spare each month for mortgage repayments. Then, you can use the PropertyGuru home loan calculator to work out how much you can afford to borrow. You should also remember to budget for a downpayment and other expenses, like legal fees.
3. Fixer-Uppers Aren’t The Answer
If you are struggling to get the money together for the perfect house, you might consider buying a fixer-upper property that you can spend some time and money renovating. However, unless you’re truly committed to this renovation project, buying a house that needs work probably isn’t the best move. In fact, it will likely cost you even more money in the long run. It’s much better to find ways to save money or put off house hunting for a little while. The last thing you want is to be stuck with a house that is essentially useless to you.
4. List Everything That You Want
Estate agents are there to help you find the property of your dreams, and as great as they are at this, they can’t do it without some input from you. After all, they can not read minds, and can’t suggest properties to you unless they know what sort of things you’re after. Because of this, it’s important that you list everything you want and need out of your potential home before you speak to an estate agent. However, you should also try to be flexible and ensure that you’re willing to compromise, as the perfect property might not exist. Or even if it does exist it might be out of your budget.
5. Carefully Look At Every Property
When looking at properties, the last thing you want to do is make assumptions right away, regardless of whether they’re good or bad. Of course, you should always go with your gut, but make sure that you take some time looking at the house before you do this. Check every single inch of the homes, and be on the lookout for mould and strange smells. You should also check that all of the toilets and taps work properly. Never let yourself feel rushed, and ask as many questions as you like. It’s best to have these written down so that you don’t forget any.
6. Always Work With Experienced Professionals
You might have done lots of research on house hunting and things to look out for when looking at properties, but unless you have the experience of professional real estate agents and inspectors, you’re going to miss something, and this something could cost you a lot of cash. Because of this, it’s vital that you hire thorough and licensed inspectors and realtors to point out any issues that could cause problems. You should also find yourself a great lawyer to help you through the paperwork. Just ensure this lawyer isn’t also representing the seller to avoid any conflicts.
7. Never Let Yourself Feel Pressured
Estate agents are supposed to be on your side, but it’s important to remember that they are also expert salespeople. Because of this, they may insist that certain properties are perfect for you and that you should rush to make an offer before someone else does. If you ever feel pressured or rushed by your estate agent, you should probably walk away. You should always be the one in control, so don’t let anyone, especially your realtor, try to take this control from you. You should also try to negotiate as much as you can, even if your estate agent isn’t too keen.
8. Property Hunting Can’t Be Rushed
Buying a house isn’t something that you can schedule or put on a timeline. Sometimes you will find the perfect property in a couple of weeks, and other times it will take you several months. Because of this, it’s important that you don’t commit to anything that requires you to have moved into your new home by a certain date. You can’t rush this process, and trying to will only lead to regrets. Because of this, you should stay on a month-to-month rental agreement with your landlord so that, when you’re ready to move out, you can do so without any penalties.
9. Make Decisions With Your Head
When you’re looking for somewhere for you and your family to live, it’s understandable that your emotions are going to get involved now and then. After all, if you can’t see you and your family living in a particular house, then it doesn’t matter how much of a bargain it is. That being said, you shouldn’t allow your heart to take over your head. You may fall in love with a home and think that it’s absolutely perfect, but if it turns out to be a bad deal, then you need to be able to walk away. There are lots of other properties out there, so dust yourself off and move on.
Buying your first family home can be a stressful and confusing process, but, hopefully, with the advice above, you’ll find it a little easier to handle.
Do you have any advice for anyone who is buying their first family home?
This is a collaborative post.