Buying your first home is a major financial investment and this article will hopefully give you a few tips to make the experience rewarding.
When buying a new home, we always hope the process will go smoothly but often it turns a little bumpy due to unforeseen circumstances or lack of planning. To help you prepare for your next home buying adventure in Okotoks, I have put a few tips together for you.
- Financial Planning – Make sure everything is in place.
There are other costs associated with buying a home that often get over looked. I recommend you sit down with your Realtor and go over all the likely costs you could incur so you can budget for these additional items. You will need to pay for things like lawyer fees, home inspection, closing costs and depending on the type of property you buy there may be additional financial costs, in Okotoks some homes may have HOA fees for example. Also, no home is perfect and you should have a financial plan to cover costs relating home maintenance and appliance repairs / replacement.
- Making the Home Buying Transaction Smooth
It is quite rare to have a completely smooth home buying experience. I find most home buyers will experience a few bumps along the home buying journey. The home inspection might turn up a problem, the mortgage company may want additional paperwork, the offer and negotiations may be strained and take longer than hoped. This is why it is important to work with an experienced Okotoks Realtor who has managed these issues before and they can guide you through the bumps and provide reassurance.
- Who You Work With Matters
Choosing an experienced Realtor, mortgage advisor, home inspector and lawyer are really important. Your Realtor should take the lead but ask everyone on your assembled team to keep everyone else informed. Your home buying team need to work together for you and remember they work for you! If you are buying a home in Okotoks, I would recommend you use a Realtor who knows this area and market. Your lawyer needs to be accessible to you and choose a home inspector who has good reviews.
- Know Your Contractual Timelines
It’s exciting when your offer is accepted, but that is just the start of the journey! Your Realtor should have negotiated some conditions in your purchase contract and these conditions will have timelines. To avoid closing delays or making your contract null and void you must understand what the timelines mean and stick to them. Your Realtor will be guiding all the way but it’s important you understand what’s required.
- Sometimes You Have To Be Prepared To Walk Away
It can be very easy to get emotionally tied to a particular property but I always advise my clients to try and keep the emotions controlled until the home inspection is complete and all the contractual conditions have been waived. It’s always best to treat home buying like any other financial investment and don’t get emotionally attached until everything is worked out and you are happy with your new home. If you are not happy, be prepared to walk away and we will find you another home.
- Work With A Realtor You Can Trust
Its so important to work with an experienced Realtor who you trust to represent your interests. Do your homework and pick a Realtor who has a proven track record, ask to speak to the Realtors previous clients for references and do not trust unverified testimonials. Being a Realtor should be a full-time occupation and not a part time job. Buying a home will be the biggest investment you make and its important that you do your homework and work with the right person.
- Make Sure You Have A Finance and Home Inspection Condition
I recommend that you always protect yourself and have conditions entered into the purchase contract that protect you and your deposit. The main conditions you should always insist on are Home Inspection and Finance. If for any reason you are not able to get the mortgage or the home inspection turns up something you are not happy with, its important the purchase contract protects you.
- Don’t Make Yourself House Poor.
Quite often people get approved for more money than they thought possible and when they start looking at homes, they fall in love with a property that is at the upper limit of what they have been financially approved. Plan a budget and stick to the budget and don’t make yourself house poor. We all love our homes but we still need money to go out and have the odd holiday.
- Don’t Second Guess Your Future Home
When buying a new home or making any large financial investment its perfectly normal to get cold feet. Its best to stop looking at new homes that come on the market after your offer has been accepted unless your deal may fall apart. Instead occupy your mind on design ideas for your new home instead of comparing it with other properties and regretting your decision.
- Don’t Apply For New Credit
Don’t apply for new credit during the home buying process. If your credit score changes it could prevent you from getting your mortgage. I knew a buyer who purchased a new truck before closing and the mortgage company refused to offer the finance. Keep your credit clean and your dreams of home ownership will come true.