Thinking of buying a home? Afraid it's going to be a stressful experience? While all life changes can be accompanied by stress, looking for a new home can be exciting and the benefits are great. Richard and Beth Witt of Massapequa, NY, offer these 8 tips to make home searching easier and less stressful. Check out their blog if you'd like to comment!
Selling a house is one of FIVE most stressful things in life? Buying a house may not be as stressful as selling a house but the following 8 tips will help to de-stress the experience.
1. Research before you look. Decide what features you most want to have in a home, what neighborhoods you prefer, and how much you’d be willing to spend each month for housing. Knowing what your monthly expenses will be and knowing that you will be comfortable with that amount is important. Expenses you will want to calculate are property taxes, utilities, maintenance, repairs, insurance. When you calculate your monthly expenses don't forget to facture in the tax benefits of home ownership.
2. Be realistic. It’s OK to be picky, but don’t be unrealistic with your expectations. There’s no such thing as a perfect home. Use your list of priorities as a guide to evaluate each property. Give more thought to needs than wants.
3. Get your finances in order. Review your credit report and be sure you have enough money to cover your down payment and closing costs. Then, talk to a lender and get pre-approved for a mortgage. This will save you the heartache later of falling in love with a house you can’t afford.
4. Don’t ask too many people for opinions. It will drive you crazy. Select one or two people to turn to if you feel you need a second opinion, but be ready to make the final decision on your own.
5. Decide your moving time-line. When is your lease up? Do you have children in school? Do you have a home to sell? All of these factors will help you determine when you should move.
6. Think long term. Are you looking for a starter house with plans to move up in a few years, or do you hope to stay in this home for a longer period? This decision may dictate what type of home you’ll buy as well as the type of mortgage terms that will best suit you.
7. Insist on a home inspection.If possible, get a warranty from the seller to cover defects for one year.
8. Hire a Realtor. Hire a real estate professional who specializes in buyer representation. Unlike a listing agent, whose first duty is to the seller, a buyer’s representative is working only for you. Buyer’s reps are usually paid out of the seller’s commission payment. To learn about Buyer's Representation click here.
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