8 Things to Look for When Buying a House

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House hunting can be an exciting experience, but it can also be a little intimidating. There are many things to consider when buying a house, from the location to the monthly payments. Make sure you take the time to figure out what’s important to you. Here are some tips on what to look for when buying a house.

Price

It’s no secret that price is the most important factor when buying a house. But what does that mean, exactly? It means that you need to know what’s in your budget. One way to do that is to get pre-approved for your home mortgage loan, so you know what price point to shop in. Not only will this help you narrow down your search, but it will also save you a lot of time and energy in the long run.

Keep in mind that you’ll be paying a 20% down payment with a conventional home mortgage loan, along with a 1-3% earnest money deposit and another 2-5% in closing costs.

You’ll also be paying for things like property taxes, homeowners’ insurance, and other related expenses in addition to your mortgage.

You don’t want to leave yourself house poor, so try not to max out your budget if you don’t have to.

Location

In what type of environment do you thrive? Are you looking to establish a lifestyle in an urban city center, a quiet suburb, or somewhere rural?

Think about your current lifestyle and what type of neighborhood will complement it. If you have children, you might want to find a family-friendly community with good schools. If you’re single, you might prefer a vibrant nightlife and easy access to entertainment and dining options.

If you commute for work, you’ll want to make sure your new home is located near major highways or has public transportation nearby.

You should also take into account the property taxes in different locations. They can vary greatly from state to state and even from county to county, so it’s important to do your research before making an offer on a house.

Size

Do you need a lot of space? Or are you looking to downsize?

Think about your current situation and how much space you really need. If you have a growing family, you might want a bigger house with more bedrooms and bathrooms. But if you’re an empty nester, you might prefer a smaller home that’s easier to maintain.

You should also consider the size of the lot. If you’re someone who likes to entertain, you might want a bigger yard for hosting parties. But if you’re not that into gardening or landscaping, a smaller lot might be just fine.

Age

Are you looking for a brand-new home, an older home with character, or something in between?

Keep in mind that newer homes will likely have features that older homes don’t, like energy-efficient appliances and updated fixtures. But they also come with a higher price tag.

Older homes, on the other hand, often come with more charming details like hardwood floors and built-in cabinets. But they might need some work to bring them up to date.

If you’re not sure what you’re looking for, it might be helpful to tour a few different types of homes before making a decision.

Condition

Is the house in move-in ready condition? Or does it need some work?

Be honest with yourself about how much work you’re willing to put into a house. If you’re not handy or don’t have the time or money to make repairs, you’ll probably want to find a home that doesn’t need any work.

But if you’re okay with a little elbow grease, you might be able to get a good deal on a fixer-upper. Just make sure you factor in the cost of repairs when you’re calculating your budget

Features

What kind of features are you looking for in a house?

Do you want a home with a pool or a backyard patio? Do you need a two-car garage or an office space?

Make a list of the must-have features you’re looking for in a house, and then start narrowing down your search.

Your real estate agent can help you create an ideal wish list that fits within your home buying budget.

Warranties

Is the house being sold as-is? Or does it come with any warranties?

Homes that are sold as-is typically don’t come with any warranties, which means you could be stuck paying for repairs if something breaks right after you move in.

If you’re not comfortable with that level of risk, you might want to look for a home that comes with a home warranty. This type of warranty covers the cost of repairs for certain items in the home, like the HVAC system, for a set period of time.

Your Real Estate Agent Is Your Best Resource

Your real estate agent can give you great guidance as you’re touring homes, pointing out things they believe should be brought to your attention, such as a small crack in the foundation that could indicate a bigger problem.

Your agent can also provide helpful advice on things like negotiating a better price, getting repairs made before closing, and more.

If you’re not working with a real estate agent, now is the time to find one. Ask your family and friends for recommendations, or look for an experienced agent in your area.

Conclusion

When you’re buying a house, there are a lot of things to consider. But as long as you take the time to do your research and work with an experienced real estate agent, you’ll be one step closer to finding the perfect home for your needs.

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