So you think you’re ready for your own piece of the American dream – ready to have a place you can call your own. Maybe you’ve had it with the noisy people in the apartment above you. Or maybe you’re tired of writing out rent checks month after month and you want to start putting money into your own home. Perhaps you want to start a family and begin putting down some roots. Whatever your motivation, you’re ready to look into what’s involved in buying a home. It is always a good idea to get pre-approved, I work with several lenders that can help you accomplish this process. Click Here to apply online.
Buying a home may be the most important financial decision you’ll ever make. You will have to come up with a down payment. You will have to meet a lender’s financial standards to qualify for a mortgage loan. And you will have to be ready to make monthly payments on the home you buy, possibly for as long as 30 years. As complex as this may seem, people buy homes for the first time every day.
Home ownership is also a big responsibility – one that not everyone enjoys. Before you take the plunge, take some time to look at what’s involved and weigh the pros and cons.
Some of the advantages of home ownership include:
•The opportunity to build equity (your financial interest) in your home every time you make a mortgage payment,
•The possibility that your home may go up in value,
•A variety of tax breaks (home mortgage interest and real estate taxes are often tax deductible), and
•The freedom and flexibility to do what you please with your own home – build an addition, change the layout, paint the walls, or choose the flooring. The possibilities are endless.
Home ownership also brings responsibilities. As a homeowner, you’ll need to:
•Spend time and money maintaining your property,
•Pay for any repairs to broken or damaged electrical, plumbing, and heating/cooling systems as well as household appliances,
•Buy a variety of basic household items and tools for the upkeep of the interior and exterior of your property, and
•Be prepared for the possibility that school and property taxes may increase.
If you feel the advantages outweigh the disadvantages, then you’re ready to find out more about how to make your dream of home ownership a reality. But, before we get to the specifics of credit and finance, there are some details you should think about, such as:
Location. Do you prefer an urban, suburban, or rural setting? A big city or a small town? Is being in the country more important than a short commute to work? Would small-town or suburban living drive you crazy or do you really crave that back yard and white picket fence? Wherever you choose to live, you’ll want to be certain that you’ll be happy.
Style. Would you prefer to live in a townhouse, a condo, a cottage, a cape, an old farmhouse, or a modern ranch? Knowing which styles you find most appealing can simplify your search for the ideal home.
New or Older. If your carpentry or plumbing skills leave a lot to be desired, you may be better off in a new home. Things tend to break and may need to be maintained or replaced more often in older homes. Then again, new construction may cost more than you can afford.
Quality of Life. If you have children, or plan to, the quality of the local school system will be an important consideration. Other quality of life issues, such as the crime rate and the availability of stores and recreational facilities, also will help you decide where you want to live.
Now let’s take a look at the financial aspects of buying a home. Knowing ahead of time what steps you’ll need to take can help you make informed, intelligent decisions and eliminate a lot of the uncertainty and anxiety as you begin this important journey.