If you are in the market to buy your first home, you may have already figured out that the process involves many different levels of knowledge and understanding. Chances are, many steps of the process are completely foreign to you.
By preparing all your information, finances, and arming yourself with an arsenal of important questions… as well as building a team of professionals, you are sure to avoid some of the most common first-time homebuyer mistakes.
1) Hire the right Agent. Personalities and experience levels range greatly, just as with any profession. Consider interviewing several local agents before deciding on which one to hire.
2) Ask your lender questions. Closing costs, pre-qualification letters, opening new credit cards right before closing… you may not know what you can do to help lower your interest rate or what the ACTUAL cost of being a homeowner entails. Your lender is here for you for answer these questions so you won’t be blindsided at closing.
3) Not figuring out how much you can actually afford. Just because you were approved for $450,000 doesn’t mean you should use all of that. A good rule of thumb is that 25% of you income should go towards housing. Keep in mind that includes your interest, PMI, and other home bills. If you buy the max of what you were approved for you may be getting in over your head.
4) Skipping the home inspection. This one can really start to spiral. You may not have noticed that the house needed a new AC unit, or that the foundation was shifting from just a walk through. Be sure to get a thorough home inspection so you know exactly what you’re buying and you don’t end up with a house that needs repairs you can’t afford to remedy.
5) Being too picky. Fixating on how you always wanted a subway tile backsplash, or disliking wall colors, or bathroom fixtures. Sometimes little details can make or break a home for first time home buyers. In reality, the little details can be an inexpensive fix… and with a little imagination your dream home could be right in front of you! Focus more on the bigger picture and overall functionality of the home.