If you have decided you are ready to purchase your first home, you can avoid a lot of first-time home buying mistakes by educating yourself about the purchasing process before you start looking.
Mistake #1: Not Getting Preapproved
If you want to purchase a home, you need to get a fully underwritten preapproval for a mortgage. Being preapproved for a mortgage will give you a realistic idea of what you can afford and will allow you to put in a strong offer when you eventually find a home that you like.
Not getting a fully underwritten preapproval for a home will put you at a disadvantage when it comes to putting in an offer on a home. A buyer is not going to take your offer as seriously as someone who is preapproved for a mortgage, so get that done before you start looking at homes.
Mistake #2: Looking at Homes You Can't Afford
Another mistake many people make is looking at homes they can't afford. Just because you were approved for a mortgage for $350,000 doesn't mean that you should purchase a home that costs $345,000. You need to consider what you can actually afford, based on all of your financial obligations, from bills to spending money to saving goals. You don't want to purchase a home that will put you in a place where you are going to struggle to meet the mortgage every month. You want to purchase a home where affording the mortgage every month is easy to do with your budget and financial situation.
Mistake #3: Not Considering the Neighborhood
Next, it is essential to focus on more than the house when searching for a residential property. When you are looking for a home to purchase, you will want to look beyond the home and consider the neighborhood. Each neighborhood is going to have its own culture and value. You want to purchase not only a home you like but purchase a home in a neighborhood that you like as well. Think about what you value in a neighborhood and look at homes in neighborhoods that you like.
Mistake #4: Going Only Off Emotion
Finally, when buying a residential property, it is natural to feel good about your purchasing space. However, you shouldn't only focus on your emotions when purchasing a property. When making an emotional decision, you may choose a home that is not the right fit for you. Instead, try to be both strategic and emotional. Create a budget and stick to it. Go with your instincts, but remember to not get emotionally attached to a home you don't own yet.
When it comes to buying your first residential property, always get fully underwritten and preapproved for a mortgage before you dive into the home buying process. Don't look at homes you can't afford. Always consider not just the house but the neighborhood where the home is located. Finally, use logic and instinct to guide your buying decision.