Mistakes are a natural part of life – but they are not something you want to make when buying a new home.
They can cost you time, money and even destroy what should be a fulfilling experience.
So, the question is, how do you avoid them in the first place?
Since many mistakes stem from not having enough information, it is critical to do your research before you get started with this process.
This post will explore some of the most common mistakes that people make when buying a new home – and hopefully help you keep from making them yourself.
1) Overlooking Financial Readiness
Before you even begin your search for a new home, make sure to print out a copy of your credit report.
You should begin monitoring your credit score several months before you begin to seriously look for a home. This gives you a chance to clean up any errors and know what types of interest rates you are likely to be approved for.
It is also essential to calculate “hidden” costs associated with a home. These can include things like taxes, insurance, utilities and other fees such as closing costs and appraisal fees. It’s often wiser to take a more conservative route when you are buying a home to give yourself a little bit of cushion when it comes to unforeseen costs.
2) Failing to Research the Area
The neighborhood that you move into can be just as important as the home you will be living in. A few things you may want to consider include:
- The quality of the general area
- The neighbors you will be living next to
- The feel and safety of the city
- The facilities and schools nearby
- Ease of access to main roads, freeways, and public transportation
There are many items that you could add to the list above. Take some time to think about the ideal area for you and your family before you commit to a home.
3) Forgetting About the Investment You Are Making
When you are in buying mode, you may not think to consider the prospect of selling your future home – but you should.
You may end up living in your new home forever, but that is not always the case. Life can (and often does) take unexpected turns, which is why you want a home that will be easy to resell.
4) Taking Unqualified Advice
It seems like everyone is an expert when you begin the process of buying a new home. Unsolicited advice will come at you from all directions – but that doesn’t mean it’s good advice.
Family or friends that haven’t purchased property in the local market may not have a good grasp of local market conditions and pricing. This translates to unrealistic expectations and poor advice.
In most cases, the big decisions should rest with the individuals who are actually making the purchase.
5) Neglecting to Consider the Property
The land that the home is built upon is often a secondary consideration when it comes to a home buyer’s evaluation.
While this is understandable, it is also not the best approach.
The property you will be living on and its boundaries can have a large impact on your lifestyle. Understanding where your property begins, where it ends and the responsibilities associated with it should definitely be included in your assessment.
6) Skipping a Thorough Inspection
The significance of a home inspection cannot be overstated.
Even though an inspection will slow down the purchasing process, they can help buyers identify potential issues that may not be immediately obvious. And trust us, you want to know about these problems before you sign on a home.
A small complication can quickly turn into a costly repair and make your home life a miserable experience. Always make sure to get a full picture of a potential home before you make any final decisions.
7) Failing to Think about the Future
You won’t be able to anticipate every possibility, but that doesn’t mean you should neglect this step.
The information that is currently available to you can help you evaluate the possibilities down the road. Some questions you may want to ask include:
- Are there any major development plans in the area?
- What type of traffic will my street be exposed to at different times of the day?
- What are the zoning laws in my area?
- What types of plans have been made for the surrounding undeveloped land?
- How have the home values fared in this neighborhood during the last few years?
Asking the right questions now can save you from some undesirable circumstances in the future.
Although avoiding these types of mistakes is ultimately the homebuyer’s responsibility, a good home builder will take the time to educate their buyers to support them with this process. Working with new homeowners to make sure they have enough information is a key characteristic of experienced and committed builders.