Don’t Sign Yet! 5 Things to Know Before Buying a House

Don't Sign Yet! 5 Things to Know Before Buying a House
Happy couple moving in a new house.

Are you thinking about buying a home soon? That's great! Buying a home is a very exciting venture and a huge thing to achieve.

But buying a house doesn't come cheap. On average, Americans spend around $384,900 on a house, so you need to make sure you're making the right decision.

There are a lot of things to know before buying a house, and there may be a lot of things you haven't considered. Here are 5 things you should know when buying a new house.

1. Consider the Closing Costs

When it comes to buying a house, there are a lot of costs to consider. The price of the house isn't the only thing you need to factor in, and it can be a big surprise for some.

If you're a first-time homeowner, you may not know about closing costs. Closing costs can be confusing and they can include a long list of fees you need to pay.

It's the last payment you need to make before you get the keys to your new place. Make sure to ask about them upfront and try to negotiate the fees you need to pay.

2. Which Mortgage Can You Afford?

When most of us buy a home, we don't pay for it all outright. A mortgage is usually the way to go. But there are a lot of different kinds of mortgages and you need to know what you can afford.

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A mortgage broker can help tell you what you can afford to pay and which kind of mortgage would be best for you. As a general rule, you want to spend around 30% of your gross income on your mortgage payments.

You also need to factor in any other debts you need to pay. This includes student loan repayments or car payments too. Only pay what you can afford and you should find something to suit you.

3. How Committed Are You to This House?

Buying a house is a massive commitment so you need to be certain that this is the place you want to be. If you only plan on sticking around for a year or two, maybe you shouldn't buy a house.

If you want to be there for the long run, buying is a great idea. Even if you end up moving away after some years, it's a good idea to figure out how you'll go about selling.

If you're buying with a partner and things turn sour, have a plan B. Discuss the assets and have the awkward discussion of who gets what. The last thing either of you wants is for a messy breakup to ruin your new home.

4. Does it Need Fixing Up?

When you find a house you like, it's easy to get swept up in the excitement. But be rational and consider what work needs to be done to it.

If it's a fixer-upper, think about how you'll afford the costs. Also, ask yourself whether you have the time to get a lot of repairs done.

Don't think about cosmetic stuff like paint, think about the fixtures and plumbing. They can end up being very expensive and you may not want to buy a house that turns into a money pit.

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5. Decide What You Want

The final step to buying your new home is to decide what you actually want. Think about the things you need to have in a new home, and make those places a priority.

Think about how many bedrooms and bathrooms you need in a home. Do you need a garden or a garage? Let your realtor know what you're looking for before wasting time on other houses.

But it's important to be realistic too. If your budget doesn't stretch to all these things, rein in your expectations. Be ready to compromise and it will help make the experience much less stressful.

These Are Important Things to Know Before Buying a House

There are a lot of things to know before buying a house, and these are only a few of them. This will help your house hunting and buying process run a lot smoother and help you find your dream home.

Looking for more tips to help you with your new home? Check out our blog section to get some inspiration.

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