While house hunting might sound exciting, it is one of the most crucial aspects of the home buying process.
From finding the right location to choosing the right property, there are so many things that you need to consider before you even start house hunting!
And, let’s not even get started on the process of buying a home.
The list is pretty extensive, from getting pre-approved for a mortgage to finding the right real estate agent.
The list is pretty comprehensive!
We asked estate agents in Wolverhampton and here is a curative checklist from the experts that will act as the perfect beginners guide for house hunting!
Work Out Your Budget
First things first, you need to know exactly how much you can spend on buying your new home.
Keep in mind that you need to save money for a down payment and pay monthly instalments to pay off your mortgage.
So, you need to set a budget that is realistic and affordable.
After all, what is the point of looking at $500,000 houses if you can only afford something under $150,000!
Get Pre-Approved for a Mortgage
Sellers and real estate agents won’t even think of you as legitimate buyers until and unless you have been pre-approved for a mortgage.
Also, by getting pre-approved, you will have a fair idea of how much money your lender or bank is willing to give you.
Usually, banks and lenders use a debt to income ratio in order to calculate whether or not you can afford your potential new home.
Make sure your debt to income ratio is under 43 per cent; but, it is even better if you can get it under 36 per cent!
Know What You’re Looking For
Are you looking for a home to grow old in?
Are you looking for a property where you can start a new family?
Is this new home going to be your permanent home, or do you plan to upgrade in the next few years?
Do you need a place with many rooms?
Are you looking for a home in a good school district?
These are some questions that you need to ask yourself so that you know exactly what it is that you want in your new home.
Hire the Right Real Estate Agent
Once you’ve answered the above questions, you’ll be able to give your real estate agent a clear picture of the kind of properties that you want to look at.
Make sure that you and your real estate agent have clear communication, a certain level of understating and ensure that you specify a budget.
Then, ask your real estate agent to show your properties that fit the description of your dream home and are well within your budget.
Create a Mental Checklist & Stick To It
Let’s say the checklist for your ideal home includes four bedrooms, a garage or parking space and a spacious kitchen.
When you start looking at properties, make sure that you stick to your checklist! It is very easy to get wowed by beautiful interiors and chic decor.
You could walk into a six-bedroom home that has been done up by professional interior designers and fall in love at first sight.
But, does this house serve your purpose?
To answer that question, you need to go back to your checklist and make sure that every potential property that you view meets most of the criteria on your list!
Understand Differences Between Needs & Wants
Let’s be realistic. Not every property you find will meet every single criterion on your checklist.
But you have made this checklist for a reason!
So, try your best to find properties that check off most of the things from your list.
Beyond that, you need to understand the difference between what you want and what you need.
We all want a state of the art modular kitchen with granite tops and false ceiling lighting, but do you really need that?
Shortlist Potential Properties
Once you’ve shortlisted potential properties, start looking at these properties from a critical point of view.
Which location do you prefer?
Which property will give you the maximum return on investment?
Which property fits most of your criteria?
Which neighbourhood do you like the most?
Once you’ve narrowed down the list of potential properties even further, opt for a home inspection.
You could even find an evaluator to help you understand the right price for the property.
Make an Offer & Sign the Deal
Once you’ve found your dream home, all you need to do is make an offer.
You can ask your real estate agent to help you negotiate the best price.
Don’t think of a negotiation as a bidding war.
Just think of it as a buyer and seller attempting to find common ground.
Ensure that all the documentation is correct and that you read the contract correctly, and once everything is in order, you can sign the dotted line and close the deal.