Investing in your first home is exciting, but it can also be somewhat intimidating. There are many things that first time home buyers need to consider to make the buying decision easier and less stressful.
First of all, remember that this is your first home. You may have high expectations but find you can’t afford the home of your dreams. You may need to live in a beginner home for a while and eventually “move up” to a larger and/or newer home. Your first home may require more refurbishment and may not be in “move in” condition right away. Your goal for your first home should be not only a place you like now, but also one that can gain you equity for future purchases. Consider key factors like location and square footage when determining your investment return. A few additional questions you may want to ask yourself include:
- Which is most important to you - the neighborhood or the home and its features?
- Are you concerned about the quality of the schools?
- Is the area highly populated with families, single adults or is it an adult community?
- Is the neighborhood safe? If you have children, are there parks, playgrounds and wide sidewalks in the area?
- Does the home require improvements? Are you willing to contribute the money and time needed for these improvements?
- Is the area zoned all residential, or does it include commercial or industrial?
- Do you need to consider job commute time?
- For parents, is the area child friendly? (Sidewalks, safe playgrounds, etc.)
Be prepared for the cost of ownership to extend beyond the initial purchase. There are costs of home ownership that extend beyond the home itself, such as maintenance, taxes, decorating and insurance. Consider a home with payments slightly below your affordable level; this will allow you extra money for these expenses.
Preparation and research are key when buying a home. Understand the community and neighborhoods you are considering. Are home values increasing or decreasing? Is the school system reputable? Is the economy prospering or depressed? All of these factors contribute to the value of homes. Ask friends and family if they are familiar with the area. Research online and read the local newspapers.
Don’t rush the home-buying process! Your agent should take the time to provide you information to make an informed decision. Use your resources wisely and you will find a home that fits your needs and provides a good investment for you.
Have a question?
Feel free to call 303-881-7413
Inquire at your convenience.