Some pretty big mishaps can happen when you’re buying a home.. the biggest reason mistakes happen is the buyer being misinformed or not knowing the right questions to ask. But these mistakes are easy to avoid if you know what they are.
Here’s a list of some common mistakes 1st time home buyers make, I found an awesome article about it on zillow.com
- Borrowing the full amount the bank is willing to lend: You’re approved! That’s great. But just because you are approved for an amount, doesn’t mean you should go out and find a house exactly that price. Buying a house that is below the maximum amount will allow a safeguard for your financial security.
- Financing with an extra-low, short term adjustable rate mortgage: Try to avoid adjustable, creative financing, balloon payments and teaser loans. A fixed mortgage will be the same 10 or 15 years from now, no matter what changes in the market. The predictably and consistency will help you make other financial decisions in the future.
- Spending all your cash to buy: You’ll need a lot more cash set aside besides the down payment… consider the closing costs, appraisal fees, buyers brokers fees, loan application fees, loan broker fees, inspection fees, etc. There are things that pop up in Escrow all the time that require cash. The down payment and closing costs are your upfront costs, but after that the ongoing costs include property taxes, hazard insurance, HOA fees and moving expenses. Prepare for these additional costs before you make the offer!
- Considering foreclosures & Short sales…: Just because the listing says “distressed” doesn’t mean its a good deal; forecloses are not so cut and dry either. If you want to find a bargain and close soon, avoid short sales and foreclosures. (I know, short sale is a deceiving phrase… they take FOREVER to close Escrow.)
- Not talking to the neighbors: The neighbors will have some inside info on the owners of the house, why they are leaving and hopefully they’ll dish about the downfalls of buying the home. If the neighbors are not too forthcoming, google it! Look for news articles, previous sales, anything that will give you some insight into the history of the home.
Mistakes happen… but buying a home is too important to make a mess of. Do some research and be informed. Ask your Realtor to go through the whole process with you on paper first, be prepared.