You want to buy or build a home but don’t know where to begin. The process looks lengthy, risky, and expensive.
Mistakes in the buying process add up. Imagine moving into your first home and finding mold in the bathroom. The renovations alone could empty your checking accounts if it needs serious repairs.
When buyers know who to trust, they save thousands of dollars in unexpected costs. You can avoid most mistakes with the help of a realtor and a home inspector.
Consideration 1: Buy or build?
The right property is an excellent investment. But should you build or buy? Maybe you want to live near the best school district in your area. Perhaps your primary concern is using modern and sustainable building materials. Your specific needs determine the best choice, but all buyers must consider budget and time constraints.
Newly-built homes usually have higher upfront costs than older homes. The final price to build a new home is frequently 30% higher than buying an older one! Buyers pay fees for inspections, escrow, and management. Building permits, labor, and temporary housing also contribute to expenses.
Money aside, building a home isn’t always feasible for buyers with a strict timeline. Someone who needs to move for work may not have enough time to build their home. After all, custom homes can take over seven months to construct. Older homes are often ready for move-in much faster, only one or two months after purchase.
Other factors may influence your decision to buy or build as well. Do you have children? You may prefer an older home in a good school district instead of something in a newer development. Are you concerned about health hazards from older building materials? Then building a new home may be the better option. Consider location, climate, cost of living, and property taxes when determining what is best for you.
Consideration 2: What can you pay?
Understanding your finances is critical when purchasing or constructing a home. The last thing anyone wants is to find themselves unable to pay their mortgage. First-time buyers often believe they can buy a house with just a down payment. In reality, the process is more involved.
Before buying or building a home, consider your budget. Homes tend to cost more than the listed price when accounting for long-term expenses. These include property taxes, interest rates, insurance prices, inspection fees, and closing costs.
Finding the right property is easier when you understand your finances. Considering major expenses helps determine what you can afford. Plus, buyers who know what they can pay monthly don’t need to worry about their mortgage payments. That means less time stressing and more time enjoying the benefits of your new property.
Consideration 3: Where to secure a loan?
Once finances are in order, you still need a loan before making offers. First-time buyers tend to accept loans with high interest rates. Shopping around can help them find better loan offers. If you get a better deal, you can apply those savings towards customizing your house on move-in day.
So how can you get the best interest rates when seeking a loan? Request quotes from several different lenders. They often offer competing interest rates to secure your business. After selecting a lender, buyers should seek preapproval for a loan. During this process, the lender investigates your finances to verify income.
If all goes well, the loan is preapproved. That guarantees the loan if the homebuyer is financially stable through closing. Now, you can start shopping!
Consideration 4: Do I need a realtor?
With a preapproved loan secured, it’s finally time to browse listings. Some buyers navigate the market alone, but most prefer the help of a licensed real estate agent. However, great realtors can be hard to find. Where should you look for yours?
Most purchasers ask a friend for a reference when searching for a realtor. Others choose to use online databases with reviews of local agents. Regardless of where you look, choose a realtor you trust. Home buyers rely upon their realtor’s expertise to make a fair purchase. In negotiations, a trustworthy agent identifies great deals and considers your best interests.
A realtor ensures you see the bigger picture when making a purchase, preventing buyer’s remorse later on. For example, perhaps you found your dream property. Everything is perfect. You love everything, but you learn the home has significant plumbing issues. Although you may need to reinstall all the pipes, you still want to buy the house. Realtors also help buyers avoid poor decisions if emotion begins affecting judgment.
Your real estate agent will help you make a fair offer on a home within your budget. If accepted, the property is almost yours.
Consideration 5: My offer was accepted. Do I need a full inspection?
A home is an investment, and proper maintenance determines its value. Structural damage may not be immediately visible, particularly in older homes. How would you feel if you were to move into your new home only to find a termite infestation? The damage might be bad enough to make you consider selling immediately! With this in mind, complete housing inspections are always necessary.
Thorough inspections save buyers immense amounts of money. Skilled inspectors can diagnose environmental threats, structural problems, drainage issues, and more. They help buyers avoid poor purchases and reduce surprise expenses from renovations and repairs.
Housing inspections create considerable savings, but their impact extends beyond the wallet. A professional inspection also demonstrates that a property is free of health hazards. These include pests, mold, and rot. The upfront cost for a complete housing inspection is high. Still, it’s a small price to pay for the security of your investment and your family.
Consideration 6: What if the inspector finds damage?
Experienced home inspectors detect housing hazards often. When this is the case, buyers worry that the deal is off. Depending on the damage, this may be true. But buyers can usually use flaws to their advantage.
When damage is present during a home inspection, you can ask the seller to perform repairs that the inspector deems necessary. If the seller refuses, you can negotiate a better offer. In some cases, you can even back out of the purchase altogether.
Professional inspections benefit buyers in multiple ways. They increase buyer confidence and help make fair purchase offers possible. In the end, a full inspection provides a better idea of a home’s value for all parties involved in its sale.
Consideration 7: How can Vantegic help?
While you can navigate your purchase alone, it is easier with the help of a lender, a realtor, and a home inspector. Ultimately, understanding the buying process helps avoid unnecessary stress and expenses.
Vantegic’s real estate team offers all of these services and more.
Schedule a discovery call to move through the purchase process with ease. Let’s discuss your real estate goals today.