If you are considering buying a new home, you must understand the process. First, you need the money to buy the house, and then you need to pay it off. While a lot of the information is being relayed by journalists, many don’t really have that all-important, “in-the-trenches” point of view. Consult a real estate expert.
If You Can Buy, Go for It
Before launching into our tips, we have a few things to say about buyer’s remorse and the market. If you can buy, you should. If you are confident in your employment and your financial situation, go for it. Just remember:
- It should be affordable. You should only buy as much house as you can afford. Think about what your needs are, and remember that your money only stretches so far!
- Consider your personal situation. Think about loans, kids and future expenses.
- Think about your comfort. If you don’t want to buy, then don’t!
As You Look for Your New Home
- Be wary of solicitors. The world is made up of salespeople, and some of them are not offering what you want. Remember that you do not have to accept everything that is offered to you.
- Get a financial planner. A financial planner can help you move forward in ways you never considered. Choosing a financial planner is a complicated topic, and you will find that you need to see the whole picture before you can make wise financial decisions.
- Build a real estate team. The more people you have in your corner the better. At the very least, you need an insurance provider, a mortgage person and a real estate agent. Interview a few and see who impresses you. Choose your team with care, and make sure that you are comfortable with the way that they do business.
- Refinance only if it makes sense.Refinancing isn’t always good or always bad. As a process, it costs money. Figure out whether it will save you money in the long run. If it does not, wait until it will.
- Choose electronic payments. It doesn’t get much safer or more convenient. If you know you will always have enough cash in the bank for your payment, set this up. Missing payments are rough on your credit score, and you’ll find that this is one more thing you don’t have to worry about.
- Save for a rainy day. If things are pretty steady, leave three months of living expenses on hand. If things are rougher, keep six months’ worth of expenses at least. The more money you have on hand, the better. It is tempting to spend money as son as you make it, but in the long run, it is always best to keep some cash set aside for unforeseen problems.
- Skip the mortgage insurance. Get a life insurance policy, instead. Your life insurance is all about how much you are going to make, and it will, in many cases, cover the amount of the money that mortgage insurance will cover and then more.
- Remember that your property taxes are not set in stone. If your area gets assessed periodically, question the assessment on a regular market. Your local municipality can make mistakes, so make sure that you look over those assessments and figure out what they might mean for you. You can knock hundreds of dollars off of your property taxes if you know what you are looking for.
- Keep good records. Keep your receipts in the same place and make sure that you are aware of all expenses.
- Move slowly. If you want to avoid buyer’s remorse, don’t rush into things. This might be the biggest decision that you ever make, so stop, smell the roses, and think about where you are financially.
About the Authors
Eric Tyson is the best-selling author of Home Buying for Dummies and Real Estate Investing for Dummies. He analyzes financial news and provides financial planning insights in his syndicated newspaper column.
Dottie Herman is the CEO of Prudential Douglas Elliman, the #4 ranked real estate company in the United States and host of the radio show Eye on Real Estate.The above information comes from Dottie Herman’s radio show when Eric Tyson was a guest, and was reprinted with permission.
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