Buying a home is a serious and hefty purchase. Before you begin the process and are ready for the commitment, there are a few questions to ask.
1. What’s My Budget?
You must figure out how much home you can afford to buy before committing. The house you like and the house you can afford might not be the same. It’s important to know what you can afford before even looking for a home, this way you don’t get your hopes up. You can do this by speaking with a loan officer (the finance part of purchasing a home) to find out what you can afford. They will let you know how much home you can afford based on your income, debts, assets, and credit. Remember there will also be expenses other than the home like utilities and insurance. It’s best to take a home payment you can easily afford rather than more than what you can handle.
2. What’s Included In The Home Sale?
Most home sales will let you know what’s included when buying the home. Be sure to have a real estate agent who can break down the contract with you. You may get home appliances included in the home sale. If the home is missing appliances like refrigerator, dishwasher, washer, and dryer, consider negotiating a lower price.
3. Why Are The Sellers Leaving?
There can be many reasons why people sell their home. You want to find out why because it could potentially benefit you. If the sellers are looking to move quickly, they tend to be more flexible with the selling price. This can be in your favor and have you moving into your dream home in no time.
4. How Much Do I Need To Save For A Down Payment?
A 20% down payment isn’t required to buy a home, but it does remove private mortgage insurance (PMI) and make you save on your monthly payments. First-time buyers usually pay anywhere between 3-7% down payment. Consider saving as much as possible so you can put a higher down payment to save in the long run.
5. How’s The Neighborhood?
If you’re moving to a place you’ve never been before, ask how the neighborhood is. You want to scope out the neighborhood before moving. Find out how the nearby schools are, the closest grocery store, restaurants, and highway. This will help you determine if that neighborhood is right for you. You can also ask for the average home price of the neighborhood to decide if what you’re paying is worth it.
6. Does This Home Cover My Needs?
Consider that you will most likely live in this home for more than 5 years. Is the home big enough for you and your family? Do you prefer a large backyard or a pool? Do you have a big enough kitchen? All these questions will help decide if a home covers your needs. Before you buy, make sure all your needs (not wants) are met.
Use these questions as guidance of what you should know when buying a home. This can avoid any future hiccups and have you ready for success. If you're looking to buy a home in Florida, ask us all the questions you want! Email us and let's get started.