Buying your first home is an exciting event, but there is so much to remember it can also be a little intimidating. Preparing in advance can make you feel more confident and reduce the possibility of potential obstacles that could come up during the sale transaction. Whether you want a simple rural home on the edge of Spicewood, a family home in Bee Cave or a Luxury home in Lakeway, we want you to have the knowledge to reach your real estate goals.Buying
Here is a list of the top Do’s and Don’ts when buying your first home:
• Do Get a mortgage pre-approval. Have a mortgage lender thoroughly go over your financials and get pre-approved for a mortgage. This will greatly increase the likelihood that the mortgage will be granted at the time of the sale. The pre-approved buyer is in a much stronger position than someone that has only gotten a mortgage pre-qualification. The pre-qualification is a general look at your financial situation and can easily fall apart at the time of sale when a more in-depth analysis will occur before the loan is secured. Taking the time to get a pre-approval will reduce the amount of searching for a home that you have to do and make closing the deal go more smoothly.
• Do Find a mortgage lender or mortgage broker. A mortgage broker is an individual that assists the buyer in finding a loan that meets their financial and qualification needs at the best rates. A broker charges origination and/or broker fees. These are paid at the time of closing. A mortgage lender is a bank or credit union that grants the loan directly to the buyer. It is best to do some research and ask others about their experiences to help you determine which situation is the best one for you. Familiarize yourself with the products each one offers such as any First Time Home Buyer Programs or FHA Loans. Understanding what fees the lender charges in advance can help you decide which one you wish to work with as well.
• Do Find the right buyer’s agent. A home is usually the largest investment a person makes in their lifetime. The first home is a large event both financially and emotionally. It is important to work with an agent that will be available to you, will help you negotiate for the best possible terms and will handle the large amount of paperwork for you to close the deal. Your real estate agent should instill confidence that your home purchase is going smoothly, and your real estate goals are being satisfied.
• Don’t Skip the Home Inspection. Getting your potential new home inspected will protect you from investing in a money pit. Even if a home has been newly constructed there could be builder oversights or structural deficiencies that could be very costly to a homeowner. Knowing that you are buying a home in solid condition that is free from mold, termites and structural damage is just good business. No matter how much you love the house, do not let your emotions cloud your best judgement.
• Don’t Be Unwilling to Compromise. Having unrealistic expectations and lack of vision can also hinder finding a home for the first-time home buyer. You will obviously want to have a list of the things you desire for your new home, but do not fall into the trap of being inflexible. You should recognize things like replacing ugly wallpaper, painting over trim that is an undesirable color or adding a room in the future are things that will add value to your home later and save you money now. Being able to compromise on simple things will help you stay within your home buying budget.
• Don’t Be Blind to The Future. Not considering the future development of the neighborhood is something many first-time home buyers do not do. It is impossible to predict the future of a chosen neighborhood completely but looking at available information can help you determine whether or not you will want to live in a location over the long haul protects your sanity and investment. If you are buying in a newer development, you will want to know what development plans are in the future. Will your presently quiet neighborhood street become a major road or a rush hour shortcut? Will they be expanding a highway right behind your house? You will also want to know what the zoning laws are in your area and if there is undeveloped land surrounding your neighborhood what will likely be built there. Finding answers regarding these questions can help you avoid unpleasant surprises.
Knowing what to expect, working with recommended professionals and being thorough about your real estate decisions will allow you to take this life milestone with confidence and make it a smooth transaction and eventually a happy memory. Buying a home is a major event but it should not be a difficult one. make buying your first home an enjoyable experience!