buying a house

or, before you buy a house: beware!

Buying your first home is an exciting time. You’ve saved money, you’ve decided where you want to live and you’re ready to take the plunge into a big commitment that will give you rewards for years to come!

But buying your first home is also a scary time, filled with new experiences and unknowns. To help take some of the guess work out of the equation, welcome to a post filled with information new home owners wish they’d known!

If you’re planning to buy a home in the near future, here’s what you want to know!

1. Go into it with good finances. If you do the hard work of improving your credit score, reducing/eliminating debt and preparing for a home purchase beforehand, you set yourself up to reap the benefits.

2. Think long-term. Buying a property really is a commitment. If you’re not ready to stay put in the area for five years or more, you’re not ready to buy. Why? When you add up all the extra costs of ownership and don’t have the long amount of time to gain value, you may actually lose money by buying instead of renting. So if you’re going to buy, buy to stay. At least for a little while.

3. Think realistically. It’s not as easy to get a mortgage these days as it was at the height of the real estate boom, but that doesn’t mean you should always jump at a mortgage you’re approved for. Look at your income, cost of living, long-term plans, debts, etc. Assess whether or not you can afford to buy.

4. Think about selling points. Sure, it sounds strange to think about resale value when you’re just about to purchase a home, but that’s exactly what savvy buyers do.

The most important thing to remember when you’re buying a home is to be informed! That way, you can buy your first place and enjoy it, without worrying about what you wish you’d known.