Your new house is likely the biggest purchase you will ever make. Since it will have such a big impact on your finances, you want everything to go as smooth as possible! Try to avoid these three common home buying mistakes when you’re looking for your next home.
1. You Buy More Than You Can Afford
When you first find what you think is your dream home, it’s easy to let emotions get the better of you. Suddenly, your whole perfect life in that house is laid out before you, and all you have to do is sign on the dotted line.
Banks and other mortgage lenders may pre-qualify you, or even pre-approve you, for the largest mortgage possible. But that does not mean that you have to borrow that much money. It won’t feel good if you move into that new house and discover that you don’t have enough left in your budget for family outings or activities. Remember: life changes all the time, and you might want to have more discretionary spending money than you do now. Don’t make the mistake of tying up all your money in your new house by buying more than you can afford.
2. You Keep Thinking the Next One Will Be Better
Good houses, and good bargains, might not come along very often in the area you’re looking in. When you find something that you and your real estate agent agree is a true gem, you might miss out on it if you don’t make an offer. Another buyer might come along and scoop it out from underneath you. If you feel like you missed out on something special, it’s because you did. You may also feel like you’re running out of good prospects.
If you find a house that you can afford and that you think you will be happy in, go ahead and make an offer. That offer gets you in the game, and, while it doesn’t bind you contractually to buy the house, it does help prevent you from losing out completely if another buyer bids against you.
3. You Are Getting Distracted by Things That Don’t Matter
When it comes to houses, the bones matter more than the cosmetics. When viewing a house, try not to be distracted by unattractive wallpaper, old paint, or stained carpets. All those things can be fixed at very little cost. You can certainly update lighting fixtures and appliances, too, once you’ve bought the house, settled in, and decided how you want to decorate the interior.
Pay attention to the structure and the layout of the house as opposed to the way the previous owners decorated it. Avoid the mistake of passing up a great deal just because the walls are painted an unattractive color.
When looking for and buying a house, you can rely on your real estate agent for experienced and knowledgeable advice that you can trust. Rely on your agent to help you avoid the mistakes people make when buying a house.