Making the decision to move house is not something that should be done impulsively. Property is one of the most expensive and worthwhile investments you can make, but there are also a lot of things to consider before you make any kind of down payment or start applying for mortgages. If you are a first-time buyer who feels it’s time to finally get on the property ladder, below are a few tips that you might find useful when it comes to searching for the right home, the sales process, and finally moving in.
Searching for Your New Home
One of the first things you will need to do is figure out how much you can afford to spend on your new home and avoid looking at properties out of your price range. If you do this, you might find yourself getting attached to a property that you can’t afford, which will make it harder to settle on one that you can. When you are working out your budget, you should also remember to factor in things like realtor fees, attorney fees, property taxes, and setting aside some money for redecorating or any potential renovations you might need to make. Once you have decided on your budget, you can start booking viewings.
Everyone has an idea of what their dream home would look like, and when you’re looking at properties, it might be hard not to compare them to your fantasy house. However, as a first-time buyer (or even second or third), it’s unlikely that you will find a property that matches your vision. Not only is this because your dream house only exists in your imagination, but anything close to it may be out of your price range. Aesthetics do count when it comes to purchasing a new house, but you should be focusing more on whether the property is structurally sound, if there is any renovation work that needs to be done, and if so, how much will that cost? Location is also very important when buying property, so it will be worth it to take the time to explore the local area to see if it’s a place that you will feel safe and comfortable living in. You should check out the ratings of local schools if you have children.
When you have found a property that you want to buy, it’s time to make an offer. You will need to have been approved for a mortgage beforehand if you are getting one, and you make the offer via your realtor. If the seller accepts your bid, the next step is to get an inspection of the property before you finalize the sale. It would be best if you did this, as although you might have viewed the property yourself more than once, a qualified surveyor will do a more thorough check for things like structural damage or potential issues and put this in a report for you. Once you receive the final inspection report, you can use this to negotiate the selling price if it appears that there will be costly renovations required.
You will need to hire an attorney as well to help you with the sale of the house, as they will be able to assist you with any legal jargon or obligations you might have as the purchaser, and they will liaise with the seller’s attorneys on your behalf. In real estate, this period is known as escrow where your money is held temporarily by a third party (such as your mortgage lender) until the terms of sale have been agreed upon and met. You should also find out how long the cooling-off period is after the sales process begins, as this will be the limitation you have to change your mind, or the seller can change their mind before everything is final.
When the sale of the property has been finalized, you can move on to the more exciting part of the process and start getting ready to move. This can still be a little bit stressful, as packing up all of your belongings and arranging them to be moved to another location will require organization and good time management. You might also have to vacate your current home for new residents earlier than you can move into your new house, which can make things more complicated. If this is the case, you will need to find temporary accommodation until you can move into your new home, whether that’s leasing a short-term apartment or staying with friends/relatives. You’ll also need to find somewhere to store your belongings until you can move them into your new home. The best way to do this is by leasing a storage unit in your local area. They often come with flexible contracts and cheap rates, which makes them ideal for a temporary place to store your belongings securely. Use websites such as StorageArea to find one near you.
You might also want to look at hiring a moving company if you have large items of furniture to move into your new home. They will have the expertise to handle heavy lifting safely, as well as trucks large enough to accommodate all of your belongings. They can also help you move across the country if you’re moving to a new state. If you are going to buy new items of furniture for your new home, you should think about timing the delivery for the first week you’re in your new house so that you’re not left without for too long.
If you’re moving abroad, you will have to arrange for your belongings to be shipped, and this can take weeks depending on the distance. You can find more information about this process online, including shipping fees, time, and destinations.
If you are a first-time buyer who is excited at the prospect of owning a property, consider the tips above to help you throughout the search, sale, and moving process and to make sure you’re getting the right new home for you.