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Whether you are a first-time buyer, are selling up and moving, or considering buying a property as an investment, it can be quite daunting. There are many factors to consider, many worries you may have, and lots of things that need planning.
To make things a little easier, we have put together a list of 6 things to organize and consider when buying a new house.
Location, location, location
For many, location is a huge factor that needs consideration when purchasing a house. Not only will the area affect your day to day life (assuming you intend living in it), but it will also impact future profitability, marketability, and popularity.
If given the choice of buying the best house on the worst street or the worst place on the best street, the latter should always be chosen.
That is not to say that you have to live in the very best area of town because that will not always be feasible, nor is it necessary. However, you should take location into account regardless of how much you like a house.When buying a house, everyone has priorities. The buying process is complex and takes time, and it’s easy to get off track. Here are some things to consider! Click To Tweet
Amenities are another area that you need to consider carefully. Are there schools within walking distance, and is the property on a regular bus route? Will you have access to shops and grocery stores, or will you need to drive for twenty minutes when you need a carton of milk?
Consider what is important to you in terms of amenities and factor those in when making your decision. You may think you have found the perfect home, but if it’s in the middle of nowhere and you like to be close to amenities, it might not be so perfect after all.
What is your borrowing power?
If you need a mortgage, one of the first things you should do when looking to buy a house is to find out how much you can borrow. This depends on several factors, including dependents, income, and any outstanding debt.
The first step in the mortgage process is to get approval in principle, which can be done either by going to a lender directly or through a financial advisor.
A financial advisor is a good option if you have never purchased a home before, as they can guide you through your options and explain the processes. They may also have access to rates and mortgage products that you wouldn’t get by going direct to a lender.
You will be told how much you can borrow, which will make it far easier when going to view properties. The last thing you want to do is fall in love with a home that you can’t afford!
Older property or new construction?
When looking for a property, one question to ask yourself is whether you would prefer an older style property or feel that a new build is a better choice. Both have positives and negatives, so it’s just a case of weighing up what suits you better.
If it’s charm and character you are after, then a period property is likely to have greater appeal. On the downside, older properties do tend to cost more to run, can feel colder, and can also be far more hassle to maintain.
New properties look clean and fresh and are usually far easier on the pocket when it comes to utility bills and upkeep. Many builders, such as California-based Landsea Homes, take great care to consider the environment when planning a new development.
Many will use environmentally conscious building materials and geothermal technology and are more energy-efficient, so if the environment plays a part in your decision, a newly constructed home has to be considered.
Besides affordability in terms of the purchase price, you need to consider the impact your purchase will have on your monthly finances.
Make a list of all the costs you are likely to encounter each month and compare it against your income. Including your monthly mortgage payments, include other ongoing expenses such as home insurance, utilities, food, local property tax, etc.
It’s also a good idea to set aside an amount each month as a contingency if you receive an unexpected bill at any point.
Running a home is not cheap, so you must make sure you can afford it before taking the plunge.
Selling your current home
If you currently own a home and need to sell before you can buy, it’s worth talking to an agent to find out how much demand is likely to be for your home. If it’s in a sought-after location, then it’s unlikely you will hit any problems, but it’s worth finding out first just in case.
Once you have secured an offer on your property, it will make buying far less stressful and will put you in a prime position as a buyer.
Before putting your house on the market, declutter your property, and make sure it’s well presented. You want your house to look homely, so don’t minimize your belongings too much, but at the same time, make sure it isn’t so packed that it appears small and claustrophobic.
How big does your new home need to be?
When looking for a new property, don’t just consider the size of the home you need now, but also consider what you may need a few years down the line. If, for example, you are a young couple, you may think that a 1-bedroom condo is more than sufficient for your needs, but if you intend starting a family soon, a two-bedroomed home with a garden may be more realistic.
Similarly, if you are a family of 6 but 3 of your kids are of any age where they intend to leave home soon, you may not need as big a house as you once did.
Moving house can be stressful, so the fewer times you have to do it, the better. Think ahead, and in a few years, you will be glad you did. Good luck!
Krystle Cook – the creator of Home Jobs by MOM – put her psychology degree on a shelf and dived into a pile of diapers and dishes instead. She is a wife and mother to two rambunctious boys, sweating it out in her Texas hometown. She loves cooking, DIY home projects, and family fun activities.