Buying a home is very exciting, but the process can be overwhelming if you are not sure what you’re doing. Working with an experienced real estate agent and home inspector will help you avoid many common home-buying mistakes.
Skipping the Pre-Approval Process
Particularly in a competitive housing market, loan pre-approval often means the difference between having your offer accepted and struggling to secure the property you want. A mortgage pre-approval saves your real estate agent and the seller time, and it also shows them you are serious about purchasing the property. Pre-approval letters give your offer an edge over the competition.
Home-Buying Mistakes: Waiving the Inspection
Forgoing a home inspection is one of a few serious home-buying mistakes. An inspection gives you detailed information about the condition of the home. You’ll learn about repairs that are necessary now and in the future.
Understanding the property’s condition gives you power at the negotiating table and informs you as the buyer. Waiving the home inspection can be costly if structural issues, safety hazards, or other problems are found.
Working Without a Real Estate Agent
Real estate agents have experience and expertise. As a buyer, you’ll enjoy access to inventory, guidance to prevent common home-buying mistakes, and assistance with each step of the purchasing process. A real estate agent is especially valuable when moving to an unfamiliar area or new community.
Home-Buying Mistakes: Passing on a Good Home for Minor Issues
Another common home-buying mistake is passing on a structurally-sound house with cosmetic issues when the property otherwise fits your budget and needs. Minor problems are expected in any property, even newly built homes.
During the inspection, ask questions about necessary repairs. It could be that only minor upgrades are needed to turn the current house into your dream home.
Not Understanding the Cost of Homeownership is One of the Common Home-Buying Mistakes
Especially if you are buying your first home, it’s critical to understand the many costs of homeownership. Homeownership includes fees outside of just your mortgage. When buying a home, you will need to pay closing costs, mortgage insurance, title insurance, and moving expenses on top of the actual price of the property.
Once you move into the home, you will be responsible for monthly bills, including:
- homeowners insurance
- HOA or condo fees
- property taxes
- monthly mortgage payments
- maintenance and repairs
- landscaping costs
As you prepare to buy a home, make a budget and prepare financially for the maintenance costs and monthly expenses.