Buying Your First Home

Buying a house is one of the largest financial decisions of your life; but how do you know you’re ready to buy a home?

You may ask: Why would I want to own?

Owning a home can give you a sense of security, knowing that YOU will benefit from any improvements you make to the property.

But first, you need to find out if you can afford a home. Meet with a mortgage consultant who is willing to spend time discussing your goals.

Are you ready?

Understand financing:

Planning ahead is the key to success. So, you should know the price range you can afford before you start shopping. Here are a few things to keep in mind:

• Down payment – this is usually the percentage of the total cost of a home that you’ll need to pay. The more money you put down, the more money you’ll save on monthly payments and, in the long run, interest paid

• Knowing what you can afford – how much house you can afford comes down to 3 factors: your monthly mortgage payment, your down payment and the amortization period or length of time it will take to pay off the loan

• Getting pre-approved – this will really help you figure out what you can spend on a home because you’ll know before you start shopping. And you’ll be protected against rising interest rates as well

With homeownership you’re responsible for added costs like home repairs, utility costs, water and electricity.

You also need to pay for taxes and insurance related to your home.  So, with these costs in mind you want to be financially prepared.

Image by Arek Socha from Pixabay

Find a Good Real Estate Agent:

Once you have determined how much you can spend and are pre-approved for a mortgage, you will want to find a real estate agent. 

Your agent can explain the market and help you find a home that suits your needs and one that you can afford.

Now it’s time to get out there and find your dream home. Royal LePage offers a few suggestions as to what to keep an eye out for:

Most people start off by having a neighbourhood in mind but a great agent may suggest options that you may not have thought of.

Curb appeal is one thing but try not to focus on the bells and whistles. Keep a lookout for things like doors and windows (are they new/old?), water leaks, squeaky floors, soggy areas around the yard that indicate poor drainage and could lead to a wet basement, missing shingles, lighting, etc. 

Closing on your home:

Closing day is the day you officially take ownership of your new home.

Closing costs – these fees need to be paid by or on the closing day and include mortgage application fees, inspections, legal fees, insurance, registration and more.

Your agent can guide you through the paperwork and the process needed to successfully close.

Quick look at the steps to take:

  • Find out what you can afford – Before looking figure out what  payments you can handle

  • Save up – if possible save something towards a down payment

  • Understand your options – speak to a mortgage specialist

  • Get a mortgage pre-approval – know how much you can afford

  • Find a real estate agent – there to help you through the entire home buying process

  • Start your home search – figure out where you want to live – out of town, in town, close to the water, close to schools etc

This might seem overwhelming but take a few minutes to speak to an agent and they can walk you through the process.

Before you know it….You’re all moved in. Welcome home!

Image by Merio from Pixabay

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