There’s nothing quite like the thrill of buying your first home. The home-buying process can be complex to say the least, and navigating it for the first time can be overwhelming. Thankfully, many have been in your shoes, and if you’re willing to learn from their advice, you can bypass the potential of costly mistakes in the home-buying journey.
Prior to beginning your home-buying process, consider reading and educating yourself about first-time home-buying. The best way to avoid problems is by addressing details before buying your first home.
Help for First Time Home Buyers
Here are some vital questions to ask before buying your first home in order to uncover any potential hidden problems:
- How can I prepare financially to buy my first home? Your home is likely the largest purchase in your life. Prior to beginning the home-buying process, pay off all the debts you possibly can, save all the money you possibly can, and live on a budget. Keep your credit in good shape by paying bills on time. Then:
- Establish your budget.
- Estimate your mortgage payment, including taxes and homeowners insurance.
- Add up your expected closing costs.
- Should I calculate taxes and homeowners insurance into my monthly mortgage payment? Taxes and insurance are often combined with monthly mortgage payments. The first year of your homeowner’s insurance is often paid up front, so be sure to include it in your budget.
- What are the average costs of monthly utilities? Purchasing a new home often involves moving into a space with more square footage than you are accustomed to. Increased square footage means increased utility bills. Often, utility companies will give you the average over the last year if you simply ask them. It pays to plan ahead on your utility budget so you aren’t surprised once you move.
- What kind of concessions is the seller willing to make? When you buy a home, the price is not all you are negotiating. Your Realtor can help you with what type of concessions would be appropriate to ask for as part of the offer.
- Are appliances and fixtures included in the home purchase? Asking in advance if the appliances and fixtures are included in your home purchase will help you avoid the possible surprise of them not being included.
- May I see the documentation on the warranties? Appliances aren’t cheap, so any that come with valid warranties are a real plus. Notice the date of purchase on major appliances to gauge how soon you may need to repair or replace them. Note if appliances are Energy Star rated or if they need to be upgraded to conserve more on monthly utilities.
- Who is responsible for scheduling the home inspection and pest inspection? In order to verify there are no major issues with the home you want to buy, a full home inspection is a vital step to complete during the home-buying process. Some Realtors set up inspections for buyers, and some don’t. The key is to not assume the inspections will be scheduled, so you aren’t caught off guard.
- When was the roof installed? A new roof is a major expense, and you will want to have ample time to save for one. Roof repairs and roof replacements are no small matters, and since asphalt roofs typically need to be replaced every 15-20 years, it’s wise to get the facts before you purchase the home.
Your Dream Home Awaits
Tulsa real estate is moving quickly, and a McGraw agent can help you find your dream home and purchase it successfully. See the communities we serve and schedule a free consultation to see how a McGraw agent can help you buy your first home.