By David Robinson
For most of us, buying a home is often our largest financial outlay we will ever make. Whether a brand new home or previously occupied, it is important to be informed of the steps and procedures that you need to be aware of before taking that plunge in becoming a home owner! If you are also selling a property with plans to buy another, make sure you have spoken with a financial expert in case you need to carry two mortgages during the process. You don’t want to get caught not being able to afford one or the other due to multiple payments needed.
Of the many important things to consider before you start shopping are what community has the amenities you want and what size/style of home will suit your needs best? If you want to be highly involved in your community, checking out the local community centre first will be a must. Many offer regular or seasonal community events, along with sports teams that might be of interest to your family. Location will also play a part when you consider the proximity to stores, recreational centres, entertainment areas, and medical facilities. A great way to decide what area works best is to spend some time visiting different communities and experiencing what they have to offer in regards to what is important to your lifestyle and family plans. Perhaps a local selection of restaurants and coffee shops within walking distance is just your thing!
Land prices vary widely due to location, so this must tie into a solid financial plan during the buying process. Spots near a park, ravine or lake while visibly more appealing, can be considerably higher to purchase, thus adding to the mortgage amount you require. This is apparent with all styles of homes including a single detached building or a condominium. In comparison, locations closer to main roads and highways can cost less, but at the potential expense of having more road traffic and noise within the home. It’s all about balancing your needs versus wants. What are the most important attributes for that new purchase, and how do they fit into your budget?
If your family is growing or downsizing in the foreseeable future, you may consider a larger or smaller dwelling than you are presently in to suit those needs better. With a huge variety of sizes and styles in the market, you have a vast array of choices to pick from. The important part is deciding which type will fits your needs best. A stand-alone home is the ultimate in privacy and space offered, but typically at a higher cost. Condominiums offer a more care-free lifestyle as many offer exterior maintenance and common grounds care as part of the ownership thus giving you more free time if you don’t like spending time cutting grass or landscaping projects, but then you need to consider monthly condo fees into your budget. Parking needs are also a big part of what you need to consider. In colder climates, it is always a treat to park indoors protected from the rain and snow. Even nicer when in a heated area! Of course these extras add to cost, and options vary with either a detached or attached garage, or a condominiums with heated underground parking.
When purchasing a property with a mortgage in mind, depending on your situation an initial down payment is typically needed to secure a property when you decide to make an offer, along with having a pre-approval from a mortgage specialist so you know what you can afford for payments. A solid budget plan is super important so you are able to keep up the regular mortgage payments and property taxes along with other commitments you may have such as a car payment, credit cards, student or other loan payments. As well, it is very important to think of related costs when purchasing and or selling, along with legal fees too. This can vary due to many factors, so consult with your realtor, mortgage contact, financial planner and lawyer as applicable before you decide to start shopping. Other expenses you may want to consider budgeting for are hiring an inspector to check the new property before you commit to the sale and then potential costs to complete upgrades should you decide to change something once take possession. The lending institution you are using may also require an appraisal of the property you are purchasing. It is wise to keep a reserve fund aside to pay for these possible extra costs over and above the actual home purchase.
It is also an important time to consider property insurance, your utility hook ups and disconnection arrangements and fees, along with your internet, phone and TV entertainment services needed at your soon to be new home. Then there are your basic needs of furniture and personal items that you may want to replace, or simply add more of in a new home.
There is nothing like the wonderful feeling of owning your own house or condo … knowing you can enjoy a comfortable place to call Home and become part of your community. Also knowing you are helping to build a sound financial future for your family!
The most important part is making sure you have a solid step by step plan in place, coupled with a budget that suits your family’s needs to ensure that new home experience is as smooth and trouble free as possible!
David’s background in real estate stems from many years of experience as a licensed Real Estate agent and a Residential Property Appraiser in a wide base of property situations. The results are effective market awareness and analysis providing accurate results during real estate transactions – Knowledge is Power! Naturally inspired to pursue an entrepreneurial life, he is enthusiastic and results oriented while working to ensure clients’ respective goals are met. Whether seeking that new place to call home or bespoke advice and guidance in selling your property, David’s Real Estate passion Will Work for You!
David Robinson, cra
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