Are you preparing to start searching for your first home? Buying a house is an incredibly exciting proposition, but there’s also a lot of pressure to make the right decision. You’ve probably never spent as much money in one go before, and this is likely to be the most important investment of your life so far. The good news is that it is possible to survive the rollercoaster ride of becoming a homeowner. Here are some simple tips to help you find a house to call home.
Establishing a budget
Setting a budget is the first thing any prospective homeowner should do. Without a budget in mind, there’s a risk that you’ll fall head over heels in love with a property that is beyond your financial reach. Get all your paperwork sorted, work out how much you could borrow and establish what that means in terms of monthly payments, as well as the sum you’re putting down. Remember to include fees, as this could affect how much you have to spend on the actual purchase. Once you’ve got a mortgage offer and you know your maximum budget, you can narrow your search options.
Choosing where to live
Location plays an important role in a property search for most buyers. If you’re flexible, this will give you a wider range of options, but there’s nothing wrong with having a specific location in mind. Think about how the options on the table suit your lifestyle and work out if you can afford to live in your first choice area. Sometimes, moving the boundaries, even by a mile or so, can make a huge difference. You may find that there’s a lot more choice and you might get more for your money in terms of square footage. If you have children or you commute to work, bear factors such as the proximity to transport links and good schools in mind.
Finding out what’s out there
You may have an idea of what you’re looking for in your first home, but it may not necessarily be available. Start your search by looking online and getting in touch with agents who can provide you with more details about real estate for sale in your desired location. It pays to have a good relationship with your agent, as they will gain information about new properties and the potential to make savings on offer prices before it becomes public knowledge. Have a look at some brochures, drive around and take a look at potential options in the flesh and set up some viewings. It’s unwise to buy anything after one viewing. It’s easy to get carried away when the sun is shining, and the house is dressed to showcase its best assets. Go back on a rainy day with your practical hat on, and if you still love it as much, this is the house for you.
Are you looking for your first home? There’s nothing more exciting than getting those keys, but buying a house can be a turbulent process. Make sure you have a set budget before you start browsing brochures or setting up appointments and take your time to make the right decision.
*This post was contributed. Family friendly post are welcome.