Make Your Home Buying Experience Memorable for the Right Reasons
Buying a new home can be an exhilarating experience, marked with a lot of excitement and hope for the future. But it is also one of the biggest financial decisions you will ever make. Add to that that there are a lot of common mistakes people make, and it can quickly become a stress-filled process that has you up at night.
So with that in mind, here are a few pointers for all you prospective home buyers to bear in mind as you shop around for your ideal home.
Develop a Budget and Stick to It
All too often, families set a budget for their new home, only to blow right through it. When dealing with hundreds of thousands of dollars, another $5,000, $10,000, or $20,000 may not seem like much. Yet stretching yourself to your absolute financial limits is a huge no-no. People often forget that jobs may change, cost of living may increase, or the economy may tank. Sure, you can afford a $2,500 monthly mortgage payment today, but what about a year from now or five years down the road?
To avoid busting your budget, get preapproved for a mortgage. Not only will this corral you into a definite spending amount, it also proves to sellers that you are serious about purchasing a home. But even when you’re preapproved, don’t be seduced into spending the full amount. Remember – the more you borrow, the higher your monthly payments and the more it costs you in the end.
Don’t Forget the Costs of Homeownership
Related to the budget discussion above are the actual costs of owning a home. Property taxes, homeowner’s insurance, and maintenance and upkeep are all “little” things that giddy new homeowners tend to forget about. If you’ve been renting an apartment, for example, you don’t have to worry about plumbing repairs or mowing the yard. When you purchase a home, those responsibilities fall squarely on your shoulders.
As a result, these expenses should be factored into your budget for a new home. If you’re preapproved for $200,000, look at homes well below that threshold so you have money left over each month to take care of daily expenses related to homeownership. Also don’t forget about closing costs! Closing costs on a $200,000 home can run close to $4,000, so bear that in mind when you decide what home to purchase.
A New House Does Not Require New Stuff
The excitement of buying a new home often spills over into buying new stuff to put in your new home. A bigger TV, a new sofa, nicer dining room furniture, and a riding lawn mower are all great things to have – if you can afford them. It is a common mistake to think that you have to upgrade everything you own to fit in with the great new house you just bought. Racking up a giant pile of credit card debt just to keep up appearances in your new house will only lead to disaster. Instead, give living in your new home a try for awhile so you can figure out exactly what you really need.
How We Can Help
Having a Realtor by your side will help you avoid these common pitfalls of purchasing a home. At Wind River Realty, we take great pride in our commitment to helping you fulfill your real estate dreams and doing so in a responsible manner. If you have any questions about the home buying process or need assistance with any related real estate matter, don’t hesitate to contact one of our agents at 856-3999. Feel free to stop by our office at 309 North Broadway in Riverton as well. We’d love to chat!