5 Things Every Home Buyer Needs to Know:
1-- Figure out how much home you can afford- Homes cost a bundle, so odds are you’ll need a home loan, aka mortgage, to foot the bill, along with a hefty down payment. Still, the question remains: What price home can you really afford? That depends on your income and other variables, so punch your info into realtor.com home affordability calculator or contact your mortgage professional to help with the numbers so you can get a ballpark figure of how much home can you afford and manage the payment.
2- Pick the right real estate agent- You buy most things yourself, sifting through a few online reviews before hitting the buy button. But a home? It’s not quite so easy. Buying a home requires transfer of deed, title search, and plenty of other paperwork. Most importantly, there is the home itself that may look great to you, but what if there is a termite problem, cracked foundation or plumbing issues or a nuclear waste plant being built down the block from where you want to buy your home and your lifetime investment?
3- Know that there is no such thing as a perfect home- It’s your first home, and we understand if you’ve dreamed about the ideal house and don’t want to settle for anything less. We’ve been there! But do understand that real estate is all about compromise. As a rule, most buyers prioritize three main things: price, size, and location. If you’re really lucky, you might hit the jackpot and achieve all three. Realistically, you can expect to achieve only two of those three things So you may get a great deal on a huge house, but it might not be in the best neighborhood. Or you may find a nice-sized house in a great neighborhood, but the price is a bit higher that you were hoping or qualified for. Or if you find a home in the right neighborhood at the right place, it’s a tiny bit, um, cozy.
4- Do your homework- Once you find a home that you love and make an offer that’s been accepted, you may be eager to move in. But don’t be hasty and don’t purchase a home without doing your due diligence. Add some contingencies to your contract that give you the right to back out of the deal if something goes horribly wrong. The most common contract contingency is the home inspection, which allows you to request a resolution for issues (i.e., a weak foundation or leaky roof, etc.) that are found by a professional.
5- Know your tax credits- The first-time home buyer tax credit may be no more, but there are several tax breaks new homeowners may not be aware of. The biggie: Discount points for your mortgage, essentially pre-paying your interest, these are also deductible. Some States and municipalities may offer mortgage credit certification, which allows first-time home buyers to claim a tax credit for some of your mortgage interest paid. Please check with your Realtor and local government to see if this credit applies to you. Laws changes often, so please contact your tax professional to get the latest update.
Ideas for 1st time Homebuyers Kit:
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Buying HUD Homes: