Purchasing a home is a big deal. Many times, a house is the most costly and valuable asset an individual can own. Many people understand that taking out a home mortgage means taking on a huge amount of debt, but what happens after you sign the papers?
As someone who purchased a house two years ago, I wish I would have thought about these four things before I took the plunge.
Work, Work, Work
Owning a home is a lot of work. If something breaks, you don’t have a landlord, maintenance team, or parent to fix the problem. You don’t have a landscaper to cut your grass and trim the bushes outside. You are responsible for the upkeep and maintenance of the outside and inside of your house. Some people enjoy these activities, but not everyone does. That’s why it is important to know that owning a home is a lot of work.
When purchasing a home, it is important to know that things can break, and it’s up to you to fix them. A few months after moving into my house I discovered an issue with my air conditioner and water heater, with both items needing to be completely replaced. Luckily, I received some money back at closing which gave me some extra cash to have these two items replaced, but no one expects to purchase a home and have to make repairs immediately. It is wise to not max yourself out on your home loan and also to have some sort of repository for extra "home" money that you can dedicate to any home repairs or maintenance.
Buying a home is one of the biggest financial responsibilities a person can take on. A house is not like an apartment; you can’t easily move to a new one if you dislike your neighbors or community. Selling a home you purchased right away can be expensive. You may lose money on the house, or if people aren’t buying it could sit on the market for a while. When buying a home, think in the long-term and plan to own it for several years. Purchase enough house for you (with maybe a little extra), but don’t over-indulge.
Talk to Your Potential Neighbors
Looks can be deceiving. A beautiful house situated in a quaint neighborhood may look pleasantly appealing, but can turn into a disaster once you move in. Unfortunately, I didn’t follow this advice when I purchased my home two years ago. If I did, I may have figured out the potential issues of the neighborhood, for instance the barking dogs at all hours of the night and the neighborhood pest problem, ahead of time.
If you found this article useful, be sure to check out these related articles:
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3 Ways to Get Government Help with Buying a Home