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Starter-Home Tips for First-Time Buyers - Haring Realty

In the excitement of shopping for a home for the first time, it's tempting to rush into a purchase. But before you commit to buying, Our REALTORS® would like to remind you to answer a few important questions.

  • Can you afford it? 
    You may have obtained approval for a loan based on the mortgage amount, but did you consider other expenses that will increase? One big issue is the cost of utilities and water. How about the cost of your commute? High gas prices combined with a long drive to work can mean a big dent in your budget. Did you consider closing costs, HOA fees, and possible renovation costs? Make sure you review every detail with your real estate agent and ask questions to ensure your understanding before you agree to the contract.

  • Is the property in good condition?
    Many first-time home buyer programs require inspections to ensure there are no hidden problems with the property. If not, you should get one. Consider including a contingency in your offer to make sure the appraisal meets or exceeds the sale price. Inspections can reveal whether the house has been properly maintained over time. If not, you may be wise to keep looking, as repairs can be costly.

  • Can you envision a future in the house?
    Even if you are buying a starter home to build some equity and then moving on, you should stay in the house for at least three to five years to maximize your investment and avoid capital gains tax. Many families stay in the house for 30 years or more! Are you comfortable with the neighborhood? Are you happy with the school district? If you think this is a forever home, you need to keep these things in mind. Try to incorporate your future needs into your current decisions. 

  • Will the house meet your needs? 
    A condominium may seem perfect to a young couple just starting a life together, but will it be large enough for the family they wish to have in the next few years? You may get more for your money by purchasing a home on the outskirts of the city, but if the distance means friends and family no longer visit, it may not be a great bargain after all. You may want to keep looking at our Bucyrus homes for sale to find a more appropriate house. There are plenty to choose from!

  • Does the property offer potential?
    Do-it-yourself renovations are not for everyone. But if you can find a home that will increase in value with a little bit of elbow grease and modest improvements, it might be worthy of your consideration. A fresh coat of paint, updated cabinets, and upgraded flooring can generate a sizable return on investment. This is especially important to consider if you intend to stay in the house for just a few years. The more work you can do yourself, the greater your profits when you put the house on the market. 

If you've put your finances in order and considered what you want in a new home, you may be ready to start shopping. If that's the case, contact us. Our real estate professionals will be happy to help you every step of the way!

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