Purchasing a home is unlike any other experience you'll ever have. This is an investment that can provide considerable returns throughout the years. Whether you're buying a primary residence, a vacation home, or a rental property, however, there are five, critical mistakes that you should be sure to avoid.
1. Not Considering "Walkability"
"Walkability" is a relatively new term in the real estate industry that refers to the accessibility of essential businesses and community features. When looking for a primary home or a rental property, make sure that building residents will be able to access things like dog parks, hiking trails, a few good shops, and a decent restaurant or two by walking. A high score in this area means that buyers will have a higher likelihood of connecting with their neighbours, fully exploring their neighbourhoods, and remaining in their homes for a significant amount of time.
2. Failing to Account For Potential Changes in Household Dynamics
Be mindful of the fact that your household dynamics could change over time. This is an especially important consideration to make if buying a primary residence that you hope to retain throughout the remainder of your lifetime. Not only do you have to account for the possibility of kids, but you also have to consider the likelihood of having aging parents move in. There are a number of ways in which family dynamics can change and the best homes are sufficiently flexible for accommodating all of these changes. These houses might have attached, in-law units, extra bathrooms, guest bedrooms, or other large-sized spaces that are suitable for conversion. Some properties simply have enough unused space on the overall lot for expanding the primary building.
3. Making an Offer before Consulting With an Agent
With greatly increased access to timely and accurate market information, more consumers are using the web to sidestep the need for real estate agents altogether. Sadly, however, they often do this to their detriment. Not only can an agent guide you through this transaction from end to end, but this professionals is also capable of providing the most current market info and pricing data. As such, when you get ready to enter into negotiations, an agent can make sure that you're not offering too much for a property, or potentially offending a seller by offering far too little.
4. Meeting with Sellers before Lining up Your Funding
In tight markets or markets with fewer properties for sale and lots of qualified prospects who are eager to buy, you definitely want to have your funding lined up before actually pursuing homes. In fact, no matter what the local market conditions may be, consulting with lenders and getting loan approvals should always be among the very first steps that you take. After all, you won't really be able to submit a firm offer on any property until you actually have the funds to back it.
5. Buying before you’re Actually Ready
Another important step to take during the formative stages of the purchasing process is to consult with a financial adviser. You want to make sure that you're actually ready for this commitment, particularly if you've never purchased or owned a home before. An adviser can help you calculate the total costs of ownership. He or she may additionally be able to recommend the best loan types for meeting your long-term financial goals. If this is a decision that you're really ready to make, your financial adviser can even tell you how much you money you should spend, which may be far different from the amount that you're qualified to borrow.
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