Being first-time homebuyers is an exciting prospect. You probably must have been waiting all your life for this moment. However, you shouldn’t let the excitement overcome your good sense. Buying a home is a serious life decision. It’s not a decision you should make silly mistakes with. Remember, you will most likely be stuck with the property you buy now for the next forty to sixty years of your life.
You may decide to buy your home through a realtor or a city-specific plan like house and land packages Melbourne. Whatever you choose, here is a list of mistakes you should avoid making:
1. Not Getting Pre-approval for Your Mortgage
Most Australians these days get pre-approval for their housing loans before browsing property. However, first-time homebuyers sometimes make the mistake of contacting real estate agents first before applying for a mortgage. It’s an amateur mistake that you should know well to avoid. The pre-approval for the loan will give you a realistic idea of your budget. You can then look for properties within your price range instead of wasting time with really expensive houses.
2. Forgoing a Professional Inspection
Before you decide to buy a house, you need to have it thoroughly inspected. Most new homebuyers think it’s sufficient to do the inspection themselves. Doing a home inspection involves more work than checking the walls for cracks or the roof for leaks. The house needs to be assessed for structural stability, pest infestations, mould and many other things. Only a professional will be able to spot such issues with a house. Therefore, do not hesitate to hire an expert home inspector. This small expense now could save you tens of thousands of dollars down the road.
3. Underestimating Your Future Housing Requirements
You should get into the house buying process with a very good idea in your mind with regards to your needs and expenses. You have to consider your future needs when you buy a house, not only your current needs. You may only need a two bedroom house now, but in the future you might have children and would need a four bedroom house. So, think about what you need five and ten years from now on. Buy the house accordingly.
4. Ignoring Additional Expenses
Don’t forget that when you buy the house, you need to pay stamp duty tax, lender’s mortgage insurance (when a good majority of your funds are borrowed) and other such expenses. These expenses are in addition to the amount you have to pay for the house. So, your budget will not be entirely spent on the house itself. Don’t forget to calculate all the expenses to avoid unexpectedly coming up short.
5. Not Getting to Know the Neighbourhood
You need to know the neighbourhood surrounding your property well. This means that you need to spend time in the area before you buy the house. Walk down the streets, go to the local farmer’s market, check out the local public transportation, and shop around. See if you like the neighbourhood. Only buy if you think you can live in this neighbourhood for the next twenty years.
In addition, you should ask your solicitor to carefully review all the legal documents, such as the title deed and, especially, the lender’s sales contract. Do not overlook this small but very important step.