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Things First-Time Homebuyers Should Know

March 21, 2021
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To have the best experience possible — and get the best house possible — it pays for first-time homebuyers to do their research. If you’re currently looking at homes in Opelika AL and the surrounding area, turning to Grayhawk Homes is a great start. After all, buying a new home saves you a lot of frustrations and unexpected costs and is a good way to ease into owning your own home. However, to get to that point, here are some other tips to help you prepare to purchase your first new home.

To start, it’s important to know what it is you really want from a home. Think about the location, price, and size and how you plan to use the home. If at least one of you is working from home, you need to think seriously about having a dedicated home office, rather than a corner in the living room, an awkward setup in a guest room, or the kitchen island. Understand what is most important and what you can be more flexible about to help with your search.

The cost of buying a home truly is the biggest issue. There’s the cost of the house itself, downpayment, mortgage, closing costs and potential upgrades that all need to be considered. It’s important to have a clear understanding of your finances and what you can realistically afford to pay each month for your mortgage.

As a result, it’s best to get pre-approval for a loan from a lender before seriously looking at homes. Check with multiple lenders to find the best rate and make sure it’s something you’re comfortable with, even if something unexpected happens. Do some research and look at other lender sources than the obvious banks. There are non-profit organizations that often help first-time homebuyers with better rates and other benefits.

One way to minimize your mortgage is by putting down a healthy downpayment. That said, you don’t necessarily have to put all of your savings into a downpayment. It’s good to keep some money in reserve to deal with unexpected issues, but try to put down enough so that your mortgage payment isn’t a financial strain.

In fact, even if you qualify for a certain amount of mortgage, it doesn’t mean you have to buy a home that uses all of it. Consider choosing a home that still meets your needs, but doesn’t push you financially beyond your comfort zone. Choosing a slightly less expensive home allows you to save more money and gives you some financial freedom, rather than having all of your money wrapped up in your home.

Do keep in mind the quality of the schools in the area you’re looking at, because this can be important for long-term value of your home, even if you don’t have children.

Also, if you’re going to be moving into a community with a home owners association, be sure to read the documents carefully. There may be specific rules that could cause you to decide against the community, such as rules relating to pet ownership. It’s best to be informed ahead of time. Also make sure that the fees are affordable when you add them into your other costs.

Finally, talk to the neighbors if you can. They can give you an honest sense of what the community is like and if daily necessities, like grocery stores, schools, etc., are close enough. Do you want a quiet neighborhood, or one where there are lots of kids? Questions like these are ones that actual residents can more easily answer.

These are just some of the tips to buying your first home. Of course, you should make sure your credit and financials are in good shape, but also think closely about what you really want in a home and what you can really afford. If you’re ready to start looking at homes in Opelika AL, contact us today to let us help you find a fantastic new home to be your first home.

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This post was written by Grayhawk Homes