Tips for First Time Home Buyers: Location, Safety and Price
Buying a home is a huge milestone in everyone’s life; and as such it requires a lot of thinking and analyzing. It is normal for the emotions to find their way into this process, but allowing them to overpower reason can have some devastating consequences. Factors such as location, safety and price influence not only the purchasing process, but also the future of home buyers, who may come to realize that the purchase was a mistake only after they’ve signed the papers. If you are currently looking for a new home, here are a few tips that will help you not regret your decision.
Choose a Location That Matches Your Lifestyle
One of the first questions home buyers ask themselves when searching for a property is: Where to buy? Where you live affects every aspect of your life, and it will also determine the future value of the property. Here are some factors you should seriously consider when choosing a location:
- Geographic area – the part of the country where you want to live will depend on average home prices, climate, proximity to your family and friends and career opportunities in your field.
- The city/suburb/rural dilemma – this decision will mostly depend on your lifestyle. Active young professionals prefer to be in the city to minimize the commute to their offices, families with children would rather live in the suburbs, while families that love the peace and quiet would appreciate life in rural area. Families and senior citizens also value proximity to medical services.
- Neighborhood – A good neighborhood is generally the one where there are no frequent violent crimes or noise, but it is also the one where you feel comfortable and where you can get along with your neighbors. Doing a thorough research on the neighborhood before you sign up on a purchase is a must.
- School district – Families with kids or couples planning to have kids must have in mind the importance of living in a good public school district.
Inspect the Property
So, you have chosen the location and found what seems to be a perfect property? Well, wait a second before you judge a book by its cover. It could have many potential pitfalls that can cause you unpleasant surprises and extra expenses afterwards. Other not so easily detectable hazards that can plague the house are problems with foundations that are beyond repair, roof issues that costs thousands of dollars to fix, carbon monoxide and radon hazard that affect health, furnace malfunctions and vermin who may seem relatively harmless, but some of them, such as termites, can have a truly devastating impact on a property’s safety. A pre-purchase inspection that includes both building and pest inspection is, therefore, the wisest choice to make in order to be sure about what you are buying. Also, it will give you a chance to back out of the purchase on time, as well as to negotiate a better price.
Can You Afford It?
Speaking of price, for most home buyers that is obviously the most decisive factor in making the purchase decision. All of the previously mentioned conditions will impact the price, so once you set a budget, you will perhaps have to make compromises on things such as proximity to family and the perfect condition of a property. One of the ways to make paying the price easier is applying for a mortgage. Still, there are limitations to how much you can borrow. To figure out if you can get enough money for a decent deposit, you can use a mortgage calculator. Be aware, though, that amount of money you’ve offered for the house is never a final sum. You have to calculate in the extra costs such as mortgage arrangement fee, legal fees, valuation fees, inspection, home repairs, furniture, moving costs, inspection, etc.
Buying a new home is always a wonderful thing, and you will, without any doubt be very enthusiastic about this decision. However, be careful not to be guided by your emotions, and let reason and thorough analysis of all available options be the foundations on which you’ll build your future in your new home.