Things You Should Know Before Buying A House
Knowing what you are getting yourself into will help you get better prepared, avoid costly mistakes, find better deals and, most importantly,† get the best help.
Being prepared will guarantee that you ask the right questions which will in turn show you did your homework and,†by itself command respect and quality services.
Be careful what you which for as you just might get it!
Too many homeowners have been taken advantage of by unscrupulous mortgage brokers who convinced them they could spend more and buy the house they really whished for; the house of their dreams… to find out a little later, or in late 2007 if you live in North America, that their budget couldn’t stretch enough to follow the rise of interest rates.
Mortgage brokers, just as loan officers by the way, are like sales people: they have quotas to fill and do receive a commission on the loan they are getting you to sign.
I hope this does give you perspective if and when you are offered a loan for a higher interest rate or for more than you think you can afford as it’s your family’s home you are risking here. It just might be worth it to wait a little and fix whatever problem, whether it be your credit score, your credit ratio or your work history, so you can get safer and cheaper financing opportunities.
I hope I don’t offend anyone when I say you shouldn’t trust loan officers any more or less than any other sales people: most of them are good, honest and hard working individuals but they can’t humanly be 100 of the profit (the difference between purchasing cost including cost of renovations and selling price) if you obey to some guidelines such as not doing it more often than once every 1 or 2 years depending on where you live and, in some places, reinvest your profits in purchasing a more expensive property.
Usually, this is the second time when you should keep a cool head.
Questions you should ask yourself here are:
- is this going to be your house for the next 50 years or is this a stepping stone towards your dream home?
- how is the commute between your house and your work?
- is this house going to fit your family’s needs in 2, 5, 10 years?
- can this house be improved cosmetically with minimum effort and would this considerably affect its resale value?
- is the neighborhood’s reputation going to change in a foreseeable future?
- where are the drugstore, grocery store, bank, video club, restaurants?
- is there public transit available?
- will the flooring cause your kids to have allergies?
- how easily can this house be maintained?
- the most important question of all: do you actually like this house?
- Bonus question: will this house fulfill your entertaining needs?
You must like it if you don’t want to grow to hate it.
Buying a house does require your whole family to make some sacrifices. You have to like your house, at least a little, if you don’t want to resent each payment. Watch home makeovers or hire a professional to help you make your house appealing to your senses as this can often be done for little money and make a tremendous difference in how you fell every time you pass your front door. You can’t know it all nor should you have to.
Surround yourself with trustworthy advisers such as an accountant, a lawyer and a real estate agent who has a reputation of integrity and good negotiation skills. Choose advisors you are comfortable with as you will have to share some intimate information with them.
Have fun as this should, if done right and with good advisors, be a very enjoyable process!
Good luck with your purchase.