Are you tired of living in your parents' basement, noisy neighbors, or upstairs? For whatever reason, you want to own your home. It can be both daunting and exciting to take this leap. All expenses that the landlord has been paying becomes your responsibility now including; taxes, maintenance, and repairs, utilities, taxes, water, garbage, and insurance, among others. If you are ready to buy a home, here is an exclusive look at the top ten home buying tips.
1. Get ready
You cannot just jump into buying a home on a whim. This is a financial process involving inspections, insurance, contracts, and mortgages that will affect your financial health and credit score. Before getting to purchase a home, you need to get your finances ready and yourself too. Some of the things that you should do include;
Look out for errors in your credit score.
Find the things that will improve your credit score because a high credit score gives you a low-interest rate.
Find ways to reduce your spending.
Prepare a budget to get the impression of your monthly spending.
Avoid spending big and taking new debts.
Begin to save for the moving cost, down payment, and closing costs.
2. Check if you can afford
It is essential that you get to know the home that you can afford. This can be done by pre-submitting your financial information to the lender for them to calculate the affordable mortgage payments you can afford. Getting a pre-approval provides you with a price range and guarantees the seller you can afford the sale. As you shop for a loan, directly go for the mortgage brokers other than falling for online scams and low-interest rate ads. Mortgage brokers will help you establish the perfect payment options and loan type.
3. Be organized
Prepare a list of significant things to you and divide it into two; 'like to haves" and 'must haves." The list will help you concentrate on what is most important. More so, have a checklist on the documents needed and things you need to do. The real estate agent and the internet can help you determine what should be on the list.
4. Have a real estate agent
A real estate agent has a better understanding of the processes involved in buying a mortgage. You should hence, hire an agent with excellent local knowledge and some years of experience in purchasing homes. Most people find real estate agents through their acquaintances, which is why you need to conduct some research before signing an agreement.
5. Begin hunting for a home
This is the best and fun part of purchasing a home. You can opt to begin your search online to get a rough idea of the homes available in your price range. Place listing sheets in a folder and start hunting a home. When attending open houses and viewing houses, you should print out the listing pages and put down some notes of your impressions and thoughts for each house. This will help you in later analyses when making the final decision.
6. Do your assignment
While you hunt for a house, put together the needed paperwork such as tax returns, pay stubs, residence history, retirement account statements, W-2 forms, and bank and credit statements. After you decided on the location, you want to settle and have narrowed down your choices to several houses, conduct some research with the help of a real estate agent. Explore the area on different times and days, examine the neighborhood, including public transportation, taxes, crime, schools, and amenities.
7. Move smart and fast
After you are through with your homework and have liked a home, it is time to move fast. However, if you have some reservation about the house, you should not succumb to pressure into completing a sale. Keep in mind that once you purchase, you will have to live with the decision.
8. Always negotiate
Your real estate agent will help you in the best way to achieve what you want. You should negotiate almost everything from inspections, fees, price, repairs, conditions, deadlines, personal property to contingencies.
9. Place your best offer first
Having completed your assignment, obtained a pre-approval letter, and put your finances right, you are in an excellent position to make your best offer first. The agent will help you determine the best offer by checking at similar homes in the area.
10. Ensure to do a home inspection
It can turn to be costly to skip a home inspection after you have already made the purchase. The home may have hidden defects, which can cost you a considerable chunk after purchase.
It is critical for you to have a thorough understanding of the processes in buying a home to avoid being shortchanged. Always remember that a real estate agent is your partner, guide, and advocate through the whole process. Download our buyer checklist today to learn more as you move towards achieving your dream.