Putting the Brakes on Blunders When Buying a New Home

Buying a home for the first time can be nerve-wracking and exciting, all at the same time. There are so many things to remember, so many considerations to be had and so many decisions to be made.

It’s no wonder, then, that some homeowners find themselves committing blunders when it comes to their search for the perfect home. At times, those mistakes can be costly or even get in the way of a successful home purchase.

Being mindful of these potential missteps can make the home-buying process easier.

1. Getting pressured into buying.

It used to be buyers would feel pressure from parents, grandparents, and other family members and friends, who were often invited along on showings. These days, showings are more likely to be limited to the buyers only. But that still hasn’t stopped these well-meaning loved ones from offering up their opinions.

Everyone has their own tastes and preferences. But at the end of the day, you’re the one who will be living with the home and you’re the one paying for it. Choosing whether or not to make an offer on a particular home should be your decision alone.

2. Missing out on a great home because you get hung up on a cosmetic feature.

It happens all the time. Buyers are shown a home that checks all their boxes, but they just can’t seem to get past the green carpet in the living room or the wallpaper in the owner’s suite.

When everything else about the home matches your needs, don’t get hung up on a cosmetic fix and miss out on a great home. Things like location, square footage, number of bedrooms, floor plan and list price are more important than off-trend paint colors or an outdated ceiling fan. Make your decisions accordingly.

3. Yearning for an out-of-reach home.

There’s a reason most buyers are advised against seeing homes outside their price range. For most people, it’s too easy to get hung up on a home with all the bells and whistles, despite the price tag well above budget.

Don’t end up feeling like you can’t possibly find a good home in your price range. Sometimes you just need to be patient and other times, it’s a matter of being able to see a home’s potential. Realize it’s human nature to want more and bigger, but don’t let it trip you up in your quest for home ownership.

4. Assuming you’ll get the home you make an offer on.

Making the decision to put in an offer on a home is a big deal. It’s easy to think that since you’ve put together your best offer, it can’t possibly be turned down by the seller.

Unfortunately, making a great offer doesn’t guarantee you’ll get the house, especially in a competitive market where sellers are often considering multiple offers. There are a lot of details for a seller to consider and if you really like a particular home, chances are other buyers will feel likewise.

The bottom line is, you shouldn’t get discouraged if your offer isn’t accepted or negotiations don’t work out. There will be another house coming along that checks just as many boxes.

5. Finance a big purchase before the closing.

Many a real estate transaction has been derailed when a buyer goes out and finances new furniture or purchases a vehicle before closing. Despite having an accepted offer and pre-approval, your lender will be monitoring your credit all the way up to the time of closing. Making a big purchase will be discovered. It can mess with your important debt-to-income ratio and even keep you from qualifying for your mortgage.

Buying your first home can be a rewarding and exciting experience, but if you’re in the market, it’s important not to fall into any of these traps that could impact your successful pathway to  home ownership.

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