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Costly Mistakes to Avoid When Buying a Home

— April 7, 2021

As you begin the home-buying process, a financial adviser can help to create a budget and make sure you’re not buying what you don’t need.

We all know that buying a home is one of the biggest decisions we will ever make. But, when buying a home, there are a lot of things you should consider: the neighborhood you should choose; how much house do you want; and last but not least, what does your house need to make it feel like home?

But, answering these questions is not an easy task. When buying a home there are a lot of financial uncertainties that just add to the overwhelmed feeling. Luckily, you can avoid these critical mistakes as well as not damaging yourself financially.

The first mistake you should avoid: Outspending your budget

Before you start the process of buying a home, it is very important to know how much a house you can afford. 

One of the greatest rules is to allocate 30 percent of your budget to home-related expenses. Those expenses include insurance, taxes, maintenance, and utilities. That 30 percent target should also include the down payment and closing costs.

Before beginning the home-buying process, it’s crucial to create a thoroughgoing budget that considers all recurring and one-time costs related to homeownership. Your budget can help you to point on how much house you can truly afford and which neighborhoods you can target. It may also prevent you from overbuying and becoming in lack of cash later.

Another mistake you should avoid: Overlooking mortgage options

While you are managing your budget, you should also ask for financing pre-approval if you are planning to take out a loan for your property. A loan manager can be the one that will show you the total amount of a loan you are qualified for; how much you will pay in interest over the life of the loan, and the calculated amount of your monthly mortgage payments.

Unfortunately, many homebuyers stop at the first loan offer they receive without looking around first. Other lenders might offer lower interest rates or the possibility for an early mortgage payoff. If you’re considering a VA or FHA loan, you should ask the lender to compare the numbers against a traditional loan.

Working with the wrong agent is another mistake you should avoid

Real estate agents should keep in mind your best interests. You should choose a qualified agent who has worked widely with buyers and has a lot of experience. Your real estate agent can really help you find the perfect house that is suitable for your physical and financial needs. If an agent is consistently pushing you to go over your intended purchase price, it would be best to consider a different agent.

Choosing wants over needs

Calculator, pen, and paperwork; image by Stevepb on
Calculator, pen, and paperwork; image by Stevepb on

Sure – that extra living space or oversized garage is great to have, but is it really necessary? It is easy to get a start in the home-buying process and forget that it might cost much more than what you really need. Before you start looking for a perfect home, you should make two lists: one titled ‘a must-have’ and the other titled ‘nice to have.’ You should look up to these lists regularly as you are looking for your perfect future home.

Skipping the due diligence process

The key principle in home-buying is always to get it in writing. An offer to purchase a home is a lawfully binding contract, and that contract should be as detailed as possible before you sign it. If the seller agrees to do these things, don’t ever rely on a verbal agreement or a handshake. Instead, have your requests written into the contract.

Abandoning the home inspection

Forgoing a home inspection can also be attractive, especially since the average inspection costs between $300 and $500. However, inspections frequently turn up possible problems home buyers really can’t see, such as incorrect installation or termites. Spending that money before buying a home could prevent large expenses later.

As you begin the home-buying process, a financial adviser can help to create a budget and make sure you’re not buying what you don’t need. They can also help you and show you how buying a home might impact your savings. Taking the right steps before buying the home could save you much more in the future.

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