Mistakes to Avoid When House Shopping

Illinois house shopping, DuPage County Real Estate AttorneyPurchasing a new home can be both exciting and intimidating. Looking at different real estate listings, daydreaming about your ideal home, and gathering different decorating ideas can be fun. However, dealing with the financial requirements and trying to understand the real estate and legal jargon can be confusing. Therefore, consulting with your own DuPage County real estate attorney when you are ready to make the move is essential.

There are several common mistakes made when shopping for a new home, and knowing what those mistakes are can help you avoid those pitfalls.

Mistake #1: Looking Before You Are Ready

The first factor to consider is if you are really ready to purchase a home. Although you may prefer to build equity each month instead of handing your money to a landlord, most real estate specialists agree that if you are planning on moving away from the area in which you are currently living, then you should avoid purchasing a home until you know where you will be settling. If you purchase a home now, you may not be able to resell or rent the home when you move away.

Mistake #2: Ignoring Your Predetermined Budget

Once you have made the decision to purchase, develop a budget and stick to it. Going over your budget by $20,000 can be tempting as it is only a slight increase of what you were planning on spending. However, a potential homebuyer always needs to consider whether his or her mortgage will still be affordable if something unexpected should happen, such as job loss or illness. Those thousands of dollars extra could end up making a big difference in your home payment.

With all of this in mind, it is better to be pre-approved for your mortgage so you will know exactly what you have to spend. Putting down at least a 20 percent down payment is also helpful. Anything less than that will typically require you to pay private mortgage insurance (PMI) until your equity hits the 20 percent mark.

Mistake #3: Failing to Account for the Costs of Owning a Home

It is sadly common for first-time homebuyers to overlook the additional costs of owning a home compared to renting. Besides the mortgage payment, there are extra expenses such as property taxes, utility bills that renters do not often pay (such as water and sewer bills), and home repair and maintenance costs. Remember to add these expenses into your monthly budget.

Mistake #4: Taking the Seller’s Word Without Documentation

Another mistake new homebuyers make is not getting everything in writing. For example, do not assume that the appliances come with the home unless your contract states that they do. Other household items that can cause conflict between a buyer and a seller include window drapes and blinds, light fixtures, ceiling fans, and bathroom fixtures. If the seller takes those items, then you as the buyer will have to replace them. Ask yourself how that expense will factor into the final sale price of the home.

Contact a Wheaton Real Estate Lawyer

If you are in the process of purchasing a home, please contact an experienced DuPage County real estate attorney to make sure that you are protected in the house sale. Call Stock, Carlson & Duff LLC at 630-665-2500 today.

Sources:

http://www.forbes.com/sites/learnvest/2013/03/06/the-7-top-home-buying-mistakes-you-should-avoid/

https://www.bankrate.com/real-estate/first-time-homebuyer-mistakes/