I don’t really have 27 of them. That is just the day of the month. I do have several things that all first time buyers should consider though.
Here is how most first time buyer’s seem to go about looking for a house: They get on Zillow or Trulia and find houses they like. Most of their criteria is based on looks. That is why it can be pretty easy to sell an inexpensive house in a terrible location as long as it looks pretty.
So, this is what The LEXpert tells first timers to think about:
1) I know this is a bummer, but you probably won’t spend the rest of your life in whatever house you pick. I had big plans for my first house. I was going to remodel it and add on to it…..then one day, my dad said “You’ll be out of here in a few years.” Well, I ended up being able to afford better, so I did move a few years later.
2) Since this house is really a stepping stone to the next house, buy something that will be easy to sell later. One day, you will find your perfect move up house and don’t want to miss it because you picked a house that will be hard to sell. That means a decent location, floor plan and anything else I have blogged about when picking a house/neighborhood. Your first buying experience is much more simple because you don’t have to sell a house in order to buy another.
3) Since it is unlikely you will be in your first place for a long time, go for either a newer house or one that has a newerish roof and HVAC. Why? Let’s say you end up wanting to move in 5 years. If the house you bought has a 10 year old HVAC system or a 15 year old roof, odds are you will have to replace it before you sell or potential buyers will be turned off by the ages of those expensive items.
4) Buy as big of a place as you can. Odds are interest rates will be higher years from now when it is time to move up. You want a house big enough to grow into if you can’t afford a bigger place later. Right now, 1300 square feet looks big compared to your apartment, but it will be easy to outgrow……geez, I know this seems doom and gloom, but you’ve got to be wise because, trust me, the house you buy will impact many areas of your life and financial future…..and relationships too.
5) Think ahead. Maybe what you think you’ll encounter 5-10 years down the road. Sure, you have one 2 year old child now. Think you will have more? Buy with that in mind. Maybe you don’t have kids now and buying a beautiful house on a busy road doesn’t bother you. It will every time your kid runs out to the car.
I totally enjoy working with first time buyers. They require a bit more attention than somebody who has bought and sold before, but I like knowing I helped them with something they will enjoy now and that will be a good investment for later. I am a little more….experienced (OLDER) than most first timers so I’ve been though the stages of life that are ahead of them.
Okay, that is only 5 things. I have several others I could add, but at 592 words so far, you might get bored reading them 😉