6 Things to Know Before Buying a Home image

Usherpa Blog - 6 Things to Know Before Buying a Home

You’ve made a “must have” and “won’t tolerate” list. You’ve figured out your budget. You’ve visited homes and tested outlets and opened windows and run faucets and inspected basements. You’re at the finish line — it’s time to actually pull the trigger on your home purchase. Here are six things to make absolutely sure you know before you purchase that house!

1. Know the home’s condition. Your home inspection is key to making sure that the condition of the home is sound, and make sure you aren’t facing down any expensive structural problems in the near future. Be extra aware of the condition of the roof and foundation, and the presence of any water damage. The cost of replacing the windows or dealing with flooding could easily blow your careful home buying budget.

2. Know all the fees. Closings costs, loan origination fees, home inspection costs, and more can easily add up. You should factor all those hidden costs in your budget to make sure you’re prepared for those expenses on top of the down payment.

3. Know the area. The home itself isn’t the only place you’ll be spending your time! Make sure you have a full understanding of the neighborhood where the house is located. Do you like the local grocery store? Is the neighborhood quiet or noisy? Does it get a lot of traffic? How’s parking? Consider all the ways the location will affect your day-to-day life before you commit.

4. Know the cost of homeownership. Your mortgage isn’t the only thing you’ll be paying each month once you’re a homeowner. You’ll also need to pay utilities, insurance, property taxes, maintenance costs, and perhaps HOA fees. Make sure you’re budgeting for all of those recurring expenses when you think about your future in this home.

5. Know that contracts can be negotiated. When you’re presented with your home buying contract, you don’t necessarily have to sign it as it’s written. Instead, be prepared to negotiate to make sure the contract is a good deal for you, not just for the home seller. Your real estate agent can help you negotiate your contract.

6. Know that your life will change. You might be buying a house that’s perfect for you right now, but will it be perfect in three years, or five, or ten? Thinking ahead and planning for your future can save you money and headaches down the line.

Buying property is a big step, so it’s important to make sure you’re investing in the right home for your needs and your budget. That means thinking long-term, doing your research, and working with your real estate agent and loan officer to ensure that you’re fully informed.

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