Avoid Common First-Time Home Buying Mistakes

As a first-time home buyer, you will simultaneously experience excitement and also be scary. It can seem overwhelming when you’re beginning to move through the home buying process.

While every home buyer’s experience will be uniquely their own, there are a few mistakes that are common.

1) Not Getting Pre-approved

It’s important to be pre-approved by a reputable mortgage lender. You will need to have an idea of what you can afford to spend on a home

This will allow a buyer to keep from blindly jumping into the home search and not knowing what perimeters the lender will require.

The formal document the buyer will receive is called a preapproval letter.

2) Not Knowing You Can Afford On a Home

While similar to having a pre-approval letter, it is important to know what is a comfortable payment. Many lenders will tell you how much you can qualify for but the important question is what do you want to pay a month.

It is important that you convey that to your lender.

3) Don’t Forget About Other Expenses

Besides your mortgage and the cost for getting your loan there will be some additional expenses.

For example, property taxes, home insurance, appliances, furniture, maintenance, and utilities are just a few expenses a new homeowner should be aware of.

So make yourself a budget and leave some room for any incidentals that may come up.

4) Not Being Realistic In Their Search

Of course, you should buy a home that works with your budget and your needs. However, make sure you don’t get caught up in a few unnecessary wants that keep you from buying a home altogether.

The best thing to do is making a list of your “needs” and your “wants”. There are some things you absolutely cannot do without like the number is bedrooms.

There are also going to be some things like granite countertops that you would like but is probably not a “deal” breaker.

5) Be Willing To Compromise

You don’t want to miss out on an opportunity to buy a home that works for your needs, just because it doesn’t fulfill your wants.

Especially in the current market, one could miss an opportunity for a wonderful home if they are not willing to make some of those “trade-offs”.

6) Not Having Vision

We aren’t talking about major renovations but things like floor coverings, paint, and minor alterations. Even if you can’t afford the updates upon moving in, you can save up over time and add improvements little by little until the house is more your style.

7) Not Having A Whole House Inspector By A Professional

Skipping the home inspection, or hiring an unqualified family member or friend to perform a home inspection could lead to issues down the road. You need to know what shape the house is in before you buy to avoid getting stuck with a money pit of home repairs you didn’t plan for.

You are educating yourself about your home and the inspector will give you great tips on maintenance as well as things to watch.

Should the inspector find any issues with the home, this will allow an opportunity to revisit the selling price with the seller and seller’s agent to make sure you’re getting a fair deal based on the condition of the home.

8) Working With An Buyer’s Agent

Lastly, and most important. Find yourself an agent as early as you can. They will provide you with a “road map” to direct you through the process.

The benefits of having a buyer’s agent are more than just having someone to let you in to open a house. They advocate on your behalf, on top of doing their research on the market.

The buyer’s agent has a fiduciary duty to the buyer, acting in their best interests, making sure their private information is confidential and accounting for all funds and documents in the home transaction.