First time Windsor home buyers, or even more experienced buyers, are often nervous about buying a house for the first time. They are overwhelmed with choices, unsure of neighbourhoods, worried about the economy or their job and wondering if they can afford it. This is completely understandable. In the past several years we have seen a housing market unlike any other. Let’s see if we can take this one by one to help answer any of your questions or concerns:
1. I’m nervous about the economy!
Of course you want to keep an eye on the economy. And if you have a job that is unpredictable, then it may not be a good time to buy a home right now. But also keep in mind that homes are priced very well today, with lots of good deals. And with interest rates at historic lows, it may be the best time to purchase a home. Even real estate experts say that if you buy a home now, you may be very grateful down the road. And while homes do respond to overall economic climate, it’s not as radical as the stock market. If you buy wisely and carefully, not strain your budget, find a home in an excellent location near good schools and keep your home in good condition, your investment should be safe from the ebbs and flows of the economy.
2. What if I can’t get a loan?
If you are on good financial footing, have a decent credit score, then contact a mortgage company and see what you qualify for. I always suggest that buyers do this before they even step foot into a home. There is no reason to look at homes that you can’t afford. It only causes heartbreak. If you are unable to secure a loan, then talk to the loan officer and find out what you can do to improve your situation. Homeownership is absolutely possible with a secure financial situation. Even if you had problems in your past, there are loans available.
3. I can’t afford the down payment!
This is usually the biggest obstacle in buying a home: coming up with the down payment. Usually, we are talking about many thousands of dollars, and that’s enough to send some home buyers, particularly first time buyers, over the edge. They wonder if they will ever be able to afford a home. Once again, talk to your loan agency and see what programs they have available. Always do careful research to make sure you are getting an affordable and reputable loan. Go with experienced and professional mortgage companies. Usually your real estate agent is able to give you some recommendations.
4. I have no idea what to buy!
I discussed this in a blog post this week. There are many choices out there. Find out what you can afford and see what types of home interests you the most. Share your thoughts with your real estate agent and be open to their suggestions. Most importantly, don’t buy a home just to buy a home.
5. I don’t know how to make repairs!
You would be surprised how many homeowners are unsure how to do even the simplest repairs. Believe me, you won’t be alone. What I have found is that once you own your own home, you will probably enjoy puttering around and seeing how things work. Many take classes at their local home improvement stores or look up how to repair on YouTube or the Internet. Of course, neighbours, family members and friends are also usually eager to offer advice and assistance. Don’t let this detour you from buying a home. While you may never be a real pro at home maintenance, chances are, you will discover that you can manage pretty well.
6. What if I buy a home and then discover I can’t afford it?
There is usually not a home buyer around that doesn’t worry about this at one point during closing. They often ask themself: “What have I done?” But take under consideration that a bank won’t loan you money if they don’t think you can afford the home. And reputable real estate agents should never show you a home that you can’t afford. Make sure that you always get a home inspection so you are aware if any expensive repairs are needed. The last thing you want to do is waive an inspection, then discover something major is wrong with the property. Now that would cause sleepless nights.
Visit with a local real estate agent to see what homes are available within your budget. Be sure to address any concerns or questions you have so you can fully understand the process and what to expect. I bet this will calm your nerves so you can feel confident in your home purchase.