Buying a house can feel as though there is a never-ending to-do list. We want to help you make sure you’ve crossed everything off and then some! Realtor.com put out this great list of thinking points that homebuyers sometimes forget in the shuffle of buying. We want to make sure you don’t forget these six things!
1. Consider the home’s resale value
Think about the amount of time you might stay in this home and do your research about trends in the neighborhood. Your real estate agent is a great resource for this. You want to make sure there is a very good probability of your house being worth equal or greater value when you decide to move.
2. Factor in the expenses you’ll face after the home is yours
Instead of solely looking at the monthly mortgage cost, make sure you factor in utilities, repairs and maintenance into your budget. Ask the current homeowners for a list of their utility costs so you can get a good estimate of what the heat bill will look in the dead of winter. A good rule of thumb is to set aside 1% of the home’s total value on an annual basis for upkeep and repairs.
3. Root out any restrictions
Make sure there are no “rules” placed on you that you’re not aware of, such as being located in a historic district that won’t let you cut down trees or make renovations to the home the way you’d like. Also, if there are any noise concerns such as a train or airport close by, ask for running schedules to make sure they aren’t going to wake you up in the middle of the night!
4. Check that past work was done up to code
While you’d like to think that everyone is honest and upfront about renovations, ask to see permits for any newer projects done to the home. If you ever want to change anything about those areas or add on, you’ll need to show that the work was done up to code the first time. And if it wasn’t, the repercussions will fall upon you, the new homeowner.
5. Get the scoop on the HOA
Homeowner’s Associations can be wonderful organizations that help keep the peace in a neighborhood and everyone’s yards looking lovely. However, they can also place a lot of restrictions on your lifestyle that you may not be aware of…such as not being able to park your boat in your driveway or not being able to paint your house a certain color. Make sure you read over the HOA handbook prior to buying the home to make sure it’s the kind of association that agrees with your lifestyle.
6. Do your homework on the neighborhood
Talk to your neighbors! Try to stop by the house at different times of the day to see who is outside, what the vibe is like and if the neighbors have any qualms about the neighborhood or area. Also, be diligent about checking out the school systems and surrounding areas to make sure they are up to your standards. And this one may sound a little crazy, but determine how close the nearest grocery store is and how far you have to travel to entertainment and dining options. While you may be in love with the house, you also need to be in love with the community.
[gravityform id=”3″ title=”true” description=”true”]