Congratulations on your marriage! It’s a big commitment, and if you’re currently considering the next big step of buying a home together, we understand that it can be a little daunting. There are a lot of decisions to make and numbers to calculate — but this stress can be dramatically reduced with the right knowledge and attitude. That said, check out these helpful tips for if you’re about to go hunting for your very first house together.
There’s more than just the mortgage to pay for
To remain competitive, real estate listing sites don’t actually give you the full price of buying a home — there are taxes, agent’s fees, insurance, and closing costs that come with the price of the house itself. And once you do purchase a home, there are still expenses you’ll have to consider, like moving-in costs and any repairs or renovations you’d like to undertake. The ‘Home Maintenance Checklist and Tips’ post by Marcus lists the many factors there are to consider as future homeowners, such as maintenance and expenses after moving in. Thus, make sure you’re well aware of all the hidden fees you’ll have to pay before purchasing your new home to avoid surprise costs and going over budget.
Get a realtor — you’re paying for one anyway
Although you can definitely buy a house on your own, you’re putting yourself at risk of spending more money and time than you have set aside. Real estate agents have the necessary connections and industry know-how to reduce costs for you and make the whole process faster and easier — it’s their job, after all. Not to mention, you’re paying for one anyway! While technically, the seller pays for the commission of buying and selling agents, it’s often baked into the price of the house, so it’s better to take advantage of this from the get-go.
Have some back up funds
We previously mentioned that there’s a myriad of other things you’ll have to pay for once you get your house — and not knowing this early on has led 63% of American millennials to have regrets about purchasing their homes. The best way to avoid this is to have a nest egg set aside for any emergencies or instances where you might end up going over budget, such as renovations or move-in costs. Try to save an extra 10-20% of your renovation budget, so you’ll have something to cover you if ever you go overboard.
A starter home is better than you think
It makes sense to want your dream home after having your dream wedding, but with this long-term commitment, having a starter home may be the best option. Of course, the idea of a starter home is subjective, but the general definition is that it’s somewhere you’re okay with living in and is less than what you can afford. Smaller, less costly houses mean everything else will cost less as well — less taxes, less insurance premiums, and less utility bills. Additionally, when you do decide to get your dream home in the future, you can turn this starter home into a real estate investment to get passive income! Our post on ‘Advice for the New or Prospective Real Estate Investor’ points out that your first property can give you tons of financial stability, as eventually, you can get a property manager to make things easier for you and let it pay for itself.
Apply for a pre-approved mortgage
The best way to find out what you can really afford and what price range you can definitely work with is by getting a pre-approved mortgage. Once you’re good to go, that’s when you can look around with confidence, as Business Insider reports that some realtors will not entertain you without one. Take note that it’s also best to have enough money saved for a down payment, as it shows lenders that you’re serious and prepared for the long-term responsibility of paying for a house.
Article solely for noworrieseventplanning.com
Authored by Samantha Amiel