Are you buying your first home and looking for some tips to help you through the process? Below are a few things to help you make important decisions when purchasing your first home.
Compare Homes When You Find One You Like
If you find a home that you are interested in, check comparable homes in the area. There are websites that you can use to check this information yourself such as Zillow or you can check with your local agent to get the most up to date information in the neighborhood that you’re looking at.
Review The Monthly Costs of Owning Your First Home
It is important to know exactly what your monthly expenses will be which includes repair costs, insurance and taxes on your home. Depending on the area you live in, your monthly taxes and insurance in your escrow can double your monthly mortgage payment. A quick search on the internet will help you find a home affordability calculator to help you begin this process to get an estimate for your expenses.
Carefully Review The Closing Costs
Don’t overlook upfront closing costs. You should investigate how much you will be spending on your closing costs which could include origination fees charged by the lender, title and settlement fees, taxes and prepaid items such as homeowners insurance or homeowner’s association fees. The form you should get from your loan officer is the Good Faith Estimate.
Know Your Monthly Budget
Examine your budget under a microscope and determine how your new home will fit into your monthly budget. According to Fannie Mae, buyers should spend no more than 28% to 30% of their income to home expenses. If your expenses do exceed that percentage, you could risk financial hardship.
Work With A Licensed Real Estate Agent
Finding a reliable real-estate agent within your area that is extremely knowledgeable in the real-estate climate the area will make the process of buying your first home run more smoothly. An agent that has strong opinions on the market stability and the future of the market will help you make the best decisions for you and your family.
Don’t forget to keep in mind that purchasing a home can be extremely labor intensive and expensive. While purchasing a home is an excellent investment into your future, keep in mind that repairs are always inevitable and be ready for when they are needed.
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