There are not many things in life as happy or exciting as buying your first house. It is a big step and means that you are finally on the property ladder. Spending your money on a mortgage each month can be much more worthwhile for many people than paying rent (which is essentially just paying someone else’s mortgage for them).
So it is a good step to take for many people. It can mean some more financial freedom and knowing that you now have an asset against your name. In spite of all of this, it can still be a pretty daunting experience. To start with, there is a lot of information to process; where do you start?
The key to starting the journey to homeownership is by prioritizing. You shouldn’t try to take on too much all at once. You also shouldn’t try to take too much on. Ask for help from those people around you if you need it. Certain things in the process will need more of your attention than other things.
But with some time and organization, everything will sort itself out. So with all of this in mind, here are some of the steps to take and how to approach getting your very first home. I hope that it proves helpful to you as you take this big life step.
Shop Around For Mortgages
There are so many different lenders and mortgages that you can take out. But when you consider a housing loan there are a few factors to consider. First of all, you need to check the fine print of the mortgage.
Will there be an introductory rate to start with and then after a certain amount of time will the rate of repayments go up? Will the interest rate change? You need to know what you will end up paying out specifically so that you can budget accordingly. You don’t want to sign up for something and realize there is nothing you can do about it until things are too late.
Don’t Do It Alone
If you have a partner that you are buying a home with, then it can help when you have any concerns. If you are buying a home solo, then don’t try to presume that you can do it all yourself. Hopefully, family and friends will be able to be there to guide you through the process and help you to deal with the paperwork or offer advice when it comes to the legal side of buying a house.
They can always be called in to help on moving day too, right? It is also of paramount importance to be working with an estate agent that you are happy with. They will be paid quite handsomely for doing their job, so you need to make sure that you use them accordingly.
Call or email them with any concerns or queries and ask for their advice. They can advise on specific areas if you are moving somewhere new, or if you are looking to buy, then can help suggest the right conveyancing person to speak to. Buying a home is a big investment, so you don’t want to feel unsure of anything, or like you have unanswered questions.
Location, Location, Location
There are several factors to take into consideration when buying a home. One of the most important ones is the location of the property. Even though you won’t be thinking of selling it right away (you’ve only just moved in). You need think about it’s resale ability.
As a home is an investment, and you never know where life might take you, the chances of being in that home until you’re retired are going to be quite slim. So you want to get a good return on that investment, right? So although you will be looking at the size of property that you want, and it’s access to certain places or things, you need to take into account where it is located.
Look at schools in the area, access to public transport, and other factors that can be a selling factor for other people. Looking at the neighboring roads is a good idea too. You want to end up with a home on an amazing street, rather than an amazing home on a bad street if that makes sense?
So do take your time when choosing. It can be easy to get caught up with making an offer as you think someone else will snap it up. But if it goes, then it wasn’t for you. Take your time!
Do Your Research
There will be a lot of research to do when you’re buying your first home. One of them is as above; location. But you also need to look into the area and the properties around it. Have any of them sold recently? If so, how much did they go for? When you look into this kind of thing, it can make a big difference to what kind of offer that you will make. You don’t want to make an offer over the amount if you don’t have to. You want to make it competitive, but also reasonable for you and what you can afford.
You should also do some research into the home itself. There is nothing wrong with asking how old things are and what work it has had done on it. You don’t want it to have any structural damage or problems like damp.
So make as many appointments to view the house as you would need, as well as asking a lot of questions. You also need to take time with a survey or conveyancing solicitor. It can make a big difference to the whole process and helps to ensure you are making a good investment.
Plan a Timeline
When it comes to moving house, it does need some military precision organizing (or at least it can feel like that). So plan out a timeline. At what point will you start looking to get approved for mortgages, as well as when you will look to move? Having it all planned out can help the process run much more smoothly. So it is worth taking the time to do it.
Research Renovation Costs
It is rare that we find our dream home just as it is. Quite often we will need to make some changes, even if it is just to the color of the walls. But that does all need to be factored into the moving costs.
How much will a whole kitchen cost to renovate, for example? If you don’t have any savings of your own to do it, then will you add it into the home loan that you’ll be asking for? If so, you need to be quite specific. So if you find a house with massive potential, but that needs to be renovated, then be specific with the costs of it.
Then when you approach a bank or mortgage lender, you can present to them what you aim to do with the house. Quite often these kinds of thing can add value so it can end up being a good investment for all involved.
Are there any other things that you think are important to consider when buying your first house? I should also add that it is important to see buying a home as a business decision. Take all emotion out of it, and you’ll make much wiser decisions, which will help you to make a better investment in your home.