Owning real estate is the goal for many individuals — whether for homeownership or business purposes. Real estate has stood out as one of the best investments anyone can make. That’s why it’s no surprise that 55% of people currently own property.
However, the real estate landscape is more competitive than ever. You’ll have an uphill struggle if you’re just starting your home search.
Since finding the home of your dreams is no easy task, so you must take your house-hunting strategy seriously. Below are seven mistakes for new house buyers that you should avoid.
1. Avoiding Getting a Mortgage
Filling out the paperwork for a mortgage isn’t a pleasant task. You have to prove to the bank that you can afford a loan, so you have to supply tons of financial details to get started.
It’s tempting to want to put off this process — but this is a mistake you don’t want to make. You won’t know how many homes you can afford until you line up a mortgage.
Even worse — you may have problems getting your house bids accepted if you aren’t pre-approved or have proof of funds. Sellers want an easy transaction, and if you run the risk of not being able to get financing, sellers won’t proceed further with your offer.
2. Forgetting About FHA Loans
Traditional mortgages aren’t always easy to qualify for when you’re a new home buyer — especially if you don’t have an established credit history. It’s harder for a bank to trust you, so you get disqualified for many mortgages. And the ones you do get aren’t a good deal.
But you also have other options if this is your first home. New buyers can qualify for FHA mortgages.
An FHA mortgage has the backing of the government. They are for buyers with poor or no credit and offer a way to start with home ownership. Make sure to see if you qualify for the program before giving up on getting a mortgage.
3. Not Listing Your Desired Features
It’s not always easy to find homes. Cash buyers snatch homes off the market before you get a chance to make a reasonable offer. And even if you do, yours gets overlooked because of cash offers.
It’s tempting to try and settle in this situation. You pick whatever you can get and hope for the best.
Unfortunately, this will lead to major headaches down the line. Make a list of features you want in your home and find a property with most of what you want. It will take a little longer to find a home to buy, but you can be assured that you’ll get what you want in a home.
4. Skipping Inspections
Along with picking a home that doesn’t meet your requirements, another common mistake new homeowners make is skipping the inspection. Sellers don’t want problems after accepting a bid, so they avoid offering inspections to potential buyers.
This works well for a seller, but it won’t for you. It can lead to you purchasing a home with unknown problems that costs you much more money than you expect — which will lead you to greatly exceed your home-buying budget and drain your bank account.
Get an inspection for any home you plan to buy. Doing this will inform you of a home’s problems and allow you to request the seller fix any issues.
5. Ignoring the Neighborhood
You aren’t just buying into a home when you purchase a property. You’re also investing in the neighborhood and everything that goes with it.
The chances are that you probably don’t want to live in an area you don’t enjoy. Even if you get a great deal on the house, you’ll have a hard time enjoying it if you don’t like your neighbors and surroundings.
Be sure to investigate the neighborhood and the amenities it has. You want to be able to find the stuff you need quickly and have enough entertainment around for when you want to leave the house. It’s even better if you can find an up-and-coming area that’s still developing and will be much more valuable in the future.
6. Underestimating Future Needs
A common mistake new homeowners make is not accounting for the future. They understand well what they need in a home today. But when it comes to the future, the picture is less clear.
Take a couple who plans to start a family, for instance. You may be able to function well in a small starter home. But when you add kids to the picture, the home may not be enough for your needs.
Consider your future needs carefully and keep them in mind when scheduling a house tour.
7. Skipping a Real Estate Agent
Some people believe they can take on the home search on their own. They’re concerned about bringing someone else into the process, so they try to do everything themselves.
The problem is that it’s easy to overlook how much work is involved. You need to find homes, do paperwork, negotiate with sellers, and much more.
You can remove much of that work by working with experienced real estate agents like John L. Scott Bothell. An experienced realtor can help you find the perfect home for your needs — and in many cases, far more efficiently than you could on your own.
Avoid Mistakes for New House Buyers
Searching for a new home is a challenging process. You have to get a mortgage, look through countless house listings, and deal with legal issues when they arise. With so much going on, it would be no surprise if you’re overwhelmed and struggling to look through your options for houses.
But you can make things easier by learning about common mistakes for new house buyers before you start searching. When you do, you can refine your search strategy and find the home of your dreams.
Do you want to learn more tips that will help you work through the real estate market? Check out the blog to find more tips for buying and selling homes.