In the spirit of contribution, collaboration and community, I am pleased to bring you this, the first of many partnership interviews with experts I love and trust to improve the value of your home.
First Time Home Buyer Part 1
There is nothing like buying your first house. So for those of you who are still on the brink, here are 8 things that may help you be successful as a first-time house hunter! This week, I’m going to share with you the first four. Let these points really sink in. Tune in next week to explore the final four!
#1 – House-hunting is tedious!
It can be fun to look at pictures of houses and even go tour the houses in person, but the emotional roller coaster might not be at the top of your “fun things I want to do” list. House hunting is jam-packed full of getting super excited about a potential house and then having all your hopes and dreams crash to the floor in front of you. You may have friends that can do home improvement projects of their own, and it is exciting to think about the potential in each new house. A must is picturing yourself living in the house to see if it is a good fit. The frustrating part comes when you find out that there is already an offer on the house, or someone just barely out bid your ceiling price. It's mentally exhausting,
#2 - Find a good real estate agent and mortgage broker.
Pick your real estate agent wisely. Do your homework. Referrals from others you know are best. You must be able to trust your agent and know that he/she have your best interest at hear. Also, being first time home buyers, you want someone who will tell you if a house was more than you can handle. They have obviously seen way more than you have, so you want them to be very honest and open.
#3 - Know why you are buying.
This one may seem obvious, but it is worth thinking about. Think about why buying is better than the alternative. Owning a house is not the investment that it used to be. You are not guaranteed to get all or even some of your money back in 3+ years. For example, if you like gardening and DIY home improvement projects, if you are renting it just seems like all that money, time and energy is going to benefit someone else. That shouldn’t be the only to buy, but it can be a big one.
Also think about where you will be in 5 years? 10 years? Will the house suit all your needs for that long?
#4 - Learn to compromise
Be realistic and know you may to compromise on a few things. Maybe you would love to have a more than one bathroom and have a basement for storage, but in reality your first time home buyer budget may not allow for everything. My best advice is to have a "must have" list, but be willing to negotiate with yourself. You may not get the second bath, but a spacious backyard. It’s important to go into your search with an open mind and realistic expectations.
Sam Lepore is a Realtor with Keller Williams in Moorestown, NJ. Call him today at 856.297.6827 ....