When most people start their home-buying journey, they usually start by listing common necessities: school district, commute time, and the type of neighbourhood they are looking for. However, what yardsticks you use to guide your search is important. Depending on how effectively you pick the yardsticks to use to guide your search, you may find the appropriate property or the wrong one.
Homebuyers should first start by considering the type of property they are looking for. This includes the number of bedrooms, bathrooms, and whether they would prefer a house or condo. However, how can this be accomplished? Here is a simple guide to help you get started on your next search!
1. Start with a plan, don’t leave it to chance
It’s important to create a realistic plan before you even start thinking about purchasing or renting a home. Place possible price limits, decide on the area of town where you want to live, and evaluate how much you can afford. You should also weigh the pros and cons of buying vs renting. This will lead you to your likes and dislikes of owning property. Your budget will help determine what kinds of homes are available to you based on how much money you want to spend per month or year. How long you plan on staying in the home is also an important factor because some mortgages require a 20-25% down payment while others only require 3%.
2. Get prequalified for a mortgage before you start buying anything!
You should also think about mortgage options depending on your yearly income and the type of house you want. It’s very difficult to buy a home if you don’t have the financial resources to qualify for a mortgage. A prequalified mortgage means that your lender has looked at your finances and determined that you likely won’t be paying more than the total cost of the home in the near future. Lenders have different qualifications that they will want from you.
Many first-time homebuyers have to deal with the dilemma of saving enough money for a down payment on a house. Different lenders will require anything from 0.5% of the total purchase price to 30%. How much you are able to contribute can depend on many factors, including your job stability, income level, household size, credit score, debt-to-income ratio, and previous financial commitments.
3. What are some things to consider when searching for a home?
The first thing you should consider are factors that are important to you. You may want better schools for your children, more space, fewer neighbours, or be able to view the city lights. Before looking at homes do research about each neighbourhood. Once you narrow it down, the real estate agents will show you different listings in your price range. The most important considerations are the location, and how long you plan to stay in the home. Location is very important because it will determine commuting distance, commute time, and crime rates if applicable.
4. How do you find a realtor?
Whether you are house hunting, looking to sell your current property, or if you want to develop a rental strategy for your holdings, find a realtor that suits these needs and is flexible with price and locations. We all know how difficult the job market is. So, if you are in the process of putting your home on the market or are looking to buy a new one, it is wise to know how to find a real estate agent who can represent you. With so many qualified candidates out there, narrowing down who you want will take some time. However, this blog is here to help! We have answers about how you can speed up your search. Ask around with family and friends and see who has good feedback and knowledge. A personal touch, advice you can trust, and convenience are just some of the benefits when working with a realtor.
5. Where do you start your search?
There are plenty of real estate websites out there that offer a variety of options for you to browse through. Regardless of where you start your search, it is important to always use all the resources that are available for you. Using multiple resources increases your chances of arriving at the best deals out there!
6. Go ahead and tour the property… but watch out for these signs too!
- It doesn’t smell good: If you smell mould, sewage or methane gas during your walk-through, it might not be a landlord or homeowner issue – it could be an indication of structural problems such as water intrusion and rotted framing.
- It smells bad: Musty odours can also indicate future issues, mostly due to ineffective ventilation and/or water problems.
- There are animals present: Animals can introduce allergens for people with pet allergies and there’s a chance that they’re in collusion with a vermin infestation in your new home!
By now, you’ve probably narrowed your choices to a few different homes and now it’s time to make your decision! Figure out what compromise is best for you. Given all of the features and benefits, can you make an even more informed decision?