16 House Hunting Hacks: A Cheat Sheet For First-Time Home Buyers – April 2018

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It’s hard being you, I understand.

You don’t need to get it all right now, but you shouldn’t start off on the wrong foot also. Here are my tips for first time home buyers:

1. Know What You Want

Are you looking for a single unit building? Would you prefer a condo? How about just a little space for your family?

You’re going to be having a lot of options to pick from, so just an advice, save yourself the stress and decide what’s perfect for you beforehand.

2. Get To Know How Much Mortgage You Qualify For

Before you go home-hunting, be sure you know how much is available for you.

3. Hire A Real Estate Agent

You’re free to do everything yourself, but, so you don’t get your fingers burnt, it’s best to get a professional who’ll guide you through the buying process. Remember, experience isn’t bought at the mall.

4. Let The Internet Help You

Go all out on the real estate blogs, firms, and online helplines you will find. You can also take advantage of social media to let trusted friends and associates in on your search. They will refer you good deals.

5. Negotiating Isn’t A Bad Word

Never be afraid to issue a counter offer. Most sellers want to make the highest gains on their sale so let your agent guide you in presenting a reasonable offer.

6. Go For Professional Inspection

Don’t take the features the seller put up on the real estate site at face value. You should hire a trained professional to ensure what you saw is what you’re getting.

7. Don’t See Everything

When going with a trained professional to check on the houses that seem like a good fit, be careful not to overload your memory with the specifications of 25 or 35 homes. Take them in bits and you’ll go for what’s best.

8. Beware Of Home Staging

Home staging is just when sellers play on your mind by rearranging furniture to make homes look so roomy. Some even go as far as making usually cluttered spots seem so spacious and appealing.

You want to avoid falling for this trick? Imagine where your stuff will be and if they’ll fit in.

9. Take Your Time

If you’re desperately looking for a place to stay, it’s okay to opt for cheap hotels, or stay with a family member. Sellers know when you’re desperate and will use it to their advantage.

So, go house-hunting when your head is cool, so you’ll take your time and make an informed decision.

10. Confirm All Measurements

Go with your own measuring tools to see things for yourself. Home-sellers may make errors when taking these things, so you shouldn’t pay for their own faults.

11. Check The Neighborhood

You’re not going to be living on an island, so have a look around before making that buying decision. If you hold beliefs most folks consider weird, it’s a good thing to check for your neighborhood’s receptiveness.

12. Ask For Previous Occupants

You should ask for the names of those who’ve stayed in the place you intend purchasing. If you feel the seller is hiding something, take a step further and ask the neighbors.

You won’t be a victim of a hit-and-run if you knew a member of a deadly gang once stayed there.

13. Check For Other Costs

A house may seem cheaper than it actually is, not until you factor in insurance premiums, legal costs, property tax costs and other extras. Check for all these to know what you’re up against.

14. Go For It

Trying to get everything going for you is technically impossible. While it’s good to take your time when home-hunting, when you find what’s perfect, go for it!

15. Get Educated

Okay, take a step back, breathe in, and then out. Check for online and offline resources that can get you educated on all the impediments you’ll be facing. Consult financial advisors on the latest hassles with applying for mortgage, consult an attorney for your state’s property laws and other legal jargons.

You won’t be an expert in all of these as you’ll still need to hire professionals when you’re ready, but it doesn’t hurt to get some background knowledge.

16. Don’t Be Afraid To Say No

Look, it’s your money and it’s your thing. If you don’t feel comfortable about the deal, or something about that condo or flat doesn’t agree with you, it’s okay to walk away.

Now you’ve a checklist to go through before going house hunting. So, go out there, and do make a good pick.