Questions to Ask Yourself Before Buying a New Home

The Scoop for Buyers

Whether you are a first-time homebuyer or a seasoned homeowner, there are many questions to ask yourself before buying a new home. Here are just a few:

How Long Will You Be There?

While often overlooked, the amount of time you plan to spend in the home is one of the most important factors to consider when buying. Essentially, does the duration of stay make it more economical to buy than rent? Of course, there is no simple answer to such a generic question. Each market is different and will require a subsequent analysis to determine if buying is the right choice. That said, it is entirely possible to predict whether or not the time you plan to spend in the house warrants its purchase. “On average, it takes four to seven years to break even on a home, where you’ve got enough appreciation where it can pay you back for the cost of the transaction and cost of ownership. I am happy to discuss this at an Initial Consultation.

How Secure is Your Job?

The expansion of the economy can improve employer sentiment. However, that does not mean that job security doesn’t weigh on the minds of those that are fortunate enough to be working. There is perhaps nothing worse than buying a home, only to discover that you are unemployed shortly after. So before you make a 30-year commitment to mortgage premiums, make sure you are secure in your employment position.

Are You Emotionally Ready?

As simple as it may sound, the emotional state of a buyer is critical during the process of buying a home. That said, homeownership is not for everyone. Buying a home is a huge commitment that not everyone is ready to sign up for. Some still wish to travel the world or find their dream careers. Perhaps even more importantly, owning a home comes with additional responsibilities: responsibilities that not everyone wants to deal with. The bigger the home, the more cost and upkeep. If you are deciding whether to keep renting or to buy, consider this:  in a rental, when something breaks, it’s the landlord’s responsibility to repair it. When you own your home, it’s on you.

What is The Market Doing?

As frustrating as it may be, one of the largest factors to consider when buying a house is something you have no control over the local market. When it comes down to it, you may not even be given any options. There may not be any available homes in your price range or the right location. While it can be cheaper to own than rent in some markets, that can change quickly.  It’s important to follow the trends.

What Are Mortgage Rates Doing?

Many people expect mortgage and interest rates to rise in 2018 as the Federal Reserve continues to tighten its monetary policy and moves towards decreasing its balance sheet. However, this prediction has been spiraling through the real estate industry since late 2016, making it difficult to know if and when a notable hike will occur.

What Are the Home Inventory Levels Where You Are Looking?

Because home prices have been appreciating, many buyers find it difficult to purchase within their financial reach. Even current homeowners are opting out of buying newer, bigger, better homes—trading up if you will—for the same reason. This makes it even more difficult for first-time buyers because the supply of starter homes is smaller than ever before. The increase of both rent and home prices mixed with stagnant wages for many leads to the combination of high demand and low supply. While this may make it harder for first-time home buyers, investors who own passive income properties should benefit from the market’s current state.

Will You Be Buying and Selling at the Same Time?

This is one of the more complicated aspects of the homebuying process. Unless you are independently wealthy, you will need to sell your home before you can buy another one. Coordinating escrows, to sell-rent-back, financing and more. Sellers are often preferring all-cash buyers, making offers with selling contingencies unattractive. It’s not impossible, but it is tricky. There’s so much to think about. You don’t want to end up with two homes or worse yet, no home at all!

The Bottom Line

There is a lot to consider when deciding whether to buy your next home. In this fast-changing market, I can help you weigh all of your options, and you can end up with the home that is right for you. Please contact me for a free consultation.

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