The thought of buying your own home is exciting, and for many, it marks years of hard work even to consider it. Before you rush in, you need to take a good, hard look at a few things before you decide to hire a real estate professional. This is a decision that you will have to live with for several decades, or maybe even the rest of your life. There are five essential questions to ask when buying a house.
1. What can I afford?
One of the most important questions to ask when buying a house is whether you can afford it. You can find many first home buyer tips on getting a loan and financing but making the mortgage every month is only the beginning. You need to consider insurance and make sure you have enough set aside for those mishaps that are a part of homeownership. For instance, if your heating and air conditioning system break, you could be in for a serious repair bill.
If you plan to sell your home in the future, it’s vital to remain updated on the various home buying trends. Even if you are not planning to sell your home, it is good to keep up with trends because it can help you spot a good deal. You might be able to find an older home that needs a few updates to bring it up to current standards at an affordable price.
2. Where do I want to buy?
It is easy to get caught up when you see the picture of your dream home on the Internet, but before you decide to buy, step back and take a good look around. Will you be happy living in that neighbourhood? How long is the commute to work? Will this be a good neighbourhood for raising children?
These are all questions you need to ask because you need to be happy once the honeymoon is over, and the realities of daily life set in. One tip is to visit the neighbourhood at night or on weekends. That is when you will get to see its true personality. If you plan to sell your home, make sure the area has a housing market that is favourable to move your house quickly when the time comes.
3. When do I want to buy?
For most, the obvious answer to this question is now, but this might not be the best answer. It might make sense to continue to build your savings and make the purchase when you are better-prepared. Another thing to consider is fluctuations in the housing market. Be aware of what is happening with interest rates and use that to guide your timing decision.
4. How long should I plan to live there?
To turn a profit, you need to stay in most homes for five years or more. If you plan to start a family, you might not want to move until the children have finished school. Jobs are another consideration when planning how long to stay in a home. Other family situations can also affect your plans, like the need to care for an aging loved one.
A home purchase should always be viewed from the standpoint that you will be there a long time. Even if you plan to sell the home in a few years, not all plans come to fruition. When committing to something this big, you need to explore “what if” situations that could affect your plans to move in the future.
5. Do I need a real estate agent?
If you are buying your first home, there are many good reasons to hire a professional. It might be tempting to try to do it yourself to save on real estate agent fees, but if you are not familiar with the home-buying process, you can end up spending more in the end. Suppose you fail to file a piece of paper or don’t know the right questions to ask when buying a house. In that case, you could easily cause the deal to fall through or end up spending more than you would if you hired a professional.
A real estate agent will look after your best interests when you are buying a home. A responsible real estate agent will go over your finances and give you an honest opinion on whether you are completely ready for homeownership. They can also help guide you to the right home for you and your budget. There are online platforms such as Oneflare that can help match customer job requests with personalised quotes from a range of categories, including real estate agents. The best home buying advice is finding a professional that you trust and building a long-term relationship with them. When you are ready to sell your home, you will already have a professional, you know and trust.