The process of buying a home is often hectic. Even if you have purchased a home before, it’s easy to forget a step here or there. Here are five things you should make sure to remember when buying a home.
Budget for Closing Costs
It’s very easy to forget to budget for closing costs. The same is true for taxes, such as property taxes you will owe on the home. Generally speaking, you can expect to pay around two to five percent of the home’s total cost in closing costs. Don’t let this cost catch you off guard. You should also avoid making any big purchases during this time, as that can make lenders nervous.
Buy Less House Than You Can Afford
This is always a smart move. You can never know what the future might bring, and you will have to plan for contingencies when deciding on your budget. For example, if you or your spouse lose a job, will you still be able to make your mortgage payments? Don’t buy a home with lots of features you don’t want or need or is bigger than what you need. More house means more maintenance time and costs.
You Can Make Improvements
You should not get caught up in small details when deciding if a home is perfect for you. For example, do you want to use home automation? If so, these features may already have been installed in an existing home, but it is also not difficult to add them yourself. Your security system will likely have most of the automation features you want, so wait until after that to worry about that sort of thing. Paint, wallpaper, and carpeting are also things that can be changed relatively easily. Don’t focus too much on them.
It’s never wise to skip thorough home inspections. A required inspection from the county or the seller’s inspection may not turn up issues that could be problematic for you. It’s usually a good idea to have a private inspector representing your interests come through the home and provide a more detailed, thorough inspection. Any issues, such as mold, damage and out-of-date wiring are all very important to be aware of when making your final decision. Once everything is finalized, the seller doesn’t have to pay for anything you discover, so don’t be in a rush.
Location is very important for homebuyers, although it can slip your mind when you’ve been hunting for a while or are working within a limited budget. However, it’s important to take a look at the neighborhood. Do the houses look good? Is the area getting built up or run down? What about the crime rate and the average age of residents? Also take into account the home’s location relative to work, schools and other amenities, such as shopping, dining, and pet care, that are relevant to you.
Buying a home is both an exciting and stressful time. To ensure you don’t forget anything important, formulate a checklist ahead of time. Problems with the purchase will be much less likely to happen, and you’ll be happier.