6.05.2017

The Do's & Don't's of Buying a Home

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Hey everyone! Happy Monday! :)

I hope you all had an amazing weekend. I've been really on the go lately and it is starting to seriously wear me out. I got back in town from Chicago this past Friday, and yesterday, I flew back out here again. I love traveling, but all of this traveling back to back like this with barely any time at home in between is REALLY exhausting. I spent my Saturday at HOME and I didn't do anything at all until 4pm. Even then, I only left the house once to get something to eat. I was THAT TIRED y'all!

Not to mention, we still have so much unpacking to do in our house! Originally, we wanted to have our housewarming this upcoming Saturday because it is my birthday weekend (YAY!), but I am so glad we decided to push it back a few weeks because there's NO WAY we would be ready for that, haha! Anyway, enough of my tiredness, I'll be fine! Today, I wanted to talk to you guys about the home buying process and some 'do's' and 'don'ts' I learned along the way!

Let me just start by saying that everyone's home buying process is different. However, there are certain things I learned that I believe can apply to everyone's experience. I hope that by sharing this, you guys will be a little more prepared than we were!

The Do's
 DO Get Pre-Approved BEFORE House Shopping
This was something we did not do. When we decided we were ready to buy a home, I instantly started browsing homes on all of those house sites and if I saw one I loved, I was itching to go look at it! Marcus is all about just doing things to make me happy, so he usually just went along with it. We would go out and tour these homes and I would fall in LOVE, but Marcus would always be like "we don't even know what we will get pre-approved for" and it would literally go in one ear and out the other with me! I wasn't hearing it! HA! The problem here is that, for one, when you find a house you love, you need to jump on it.. QUICKLY! Because homes sell so freaking fast it'll make your head spin. Well sis, if you aren't pre-approved, you can't put an offer in (I wasn't thinking at all). Also, you don't want to fall in love with a house that is more than you want to spend. So, to avoid these things, just get pre-approved before you get out and start picking out furniture and imagining yourself living in the perfect house you just had to look at.

DO Hire a Realtor
When Marcus and I first started looking a couple years ago, we thought we didn't need a realtor honestly. We thought we could find a house we liked online, click the "contact me to view" button, and then pick our lender, and just go from there. We had NO IDEA what we were doing at all. The more serious we got about buying a home, the more we started to think "okay.. we need help. We need someone who knows all about this to guide us". I promise you, getting a realtor in the beginning right after getting pre-approved for your loan will make things so much easier for you. Shout out to our realtor Juanita Charles, she hooked us up with everything we needed to have a painless process and closing!

DO Look At Several Houses
 Don't just buy the first house you see. Take your time to compare it to other houses in the neighborhood or other neighborhoods. You may think that you won't find anything else if you wait a day or two, but trust me, do the research. Marcus and I looked at A LOT of homes and I am thankful for that because some of the things we thought we wanted, we ended up not caring about. Some of the things we didn't think would be deal breakers for us, ended up being deal breakers. There are so many different things that can come up when you're in the moment that you don't think of initially. Plus, if you have an awesome realtor like ours, they will be taking notes to ensure they show you more of what you want and less of what you don't!

DO Get a Home Inspection
This one we almost didn't do, but I am glad we did. Our home was brand new, no one had lived in it previously, however, I still think it was very important that we got the inspection because you never know what surprises can come up and it's better to get it taken care of before you close. The seller will usually fix those things for you because you haven't signed your life away yet. For example, even though our house was new, our inspector found that one of the sinks in our master bathroom was leaking. It was a small fix, but we didn't have to fix it! Inspections can be a little pricey, but the peace of mind I have after getting one is priceless.

 The Don'ts

DON'T Make Large Purchases
You want to make sure that you don't buy anything large prior to closing on your house, such as furniture, TVs, or a car. Those things may effect your credit and you don't want any red flags with your lender. I think lenders probably check your debt-to-income ratio once again right before closing and if your debt has increased significantly, it can screw you! So, just wait until after closing to make big purchases. I was so paranoid with this one, I didn't even want to make small purchases! HAHA.

DON'T Buy More House Than You Can Afford
Getting pre-approved for a loan can be tricky. Sometimes, you may get approved for a higher amount than you can actually afford or want to spend each month. Marcus and I had an amount in our head before we got pre-approved that we did not want to go over no matter what, and I advise others to do the same. What you don't want to happen is for you to become "house poor" meaning that you're in a nice big house, but you can't afford to do anything in it or go anywhere. Be smart and buy within your means.

DON'T Forget About Hidden Fees
Well, not exactly hidden fees, but just other fees. When you're saving your money for the down payment, make sure that's not all you're saving for. There's closing costs, inspection fees, fees to turn on water, electric, etc, trash service fees, etc. Also, when you get into your home, you're going to be excited and want to buy furniture and decorate! Make sure you save money for things that can pop up and unexpected expenses.

DON'T Give Up
This process can be SO LONG and STRESSFUL, but I promise you it is so worth it! I wanted to give up a few times simply because we weren't finding what we were looking for, and then when we would find it, someone else would have already got it before we could or some other reason. I was feeling discouraged and just OVER IT girl. I'm glad I stayed the course though because owning my own house at just 25 years old is such a rewarding experience and I wouldn't trade any of it for the world because the experience was MINE.

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So, that's all I'm going to say for now, but I know there's so many other things I can say! For all of you who have bought homes before, what are some tips you can share with first time home buyers? I'd love it if you'd drop a comment below! :)

Thanks so much for reading! xo  
  

2 comments:

  1. Great post! Thanks for the heads up so we'll know what things to look out for! Congrats again on the new home!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thank you and thanks for reading love! I'm glad you found it helpful. Good luck to you guys on your home buying process! Xo

    ReplyDelete

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