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First Time Home Buyer Mistakes

First time home buyers make up a surprising percent of the market, in fact, this year first time home buyers made up about 34% of residential real estate sales this year. That’s a lot of people! There can be a lot to think about when buyers start their search, and sometimes mistakes are made. Below are the most common first time home buyer mistakes to avoid.  

Not Starting Out with a Pre Approval

Pre approvals are a must-have for any buyer but in particular first time home buyers. Pre approvals let non-cash buyers know how much house they can feasibly afford. Pre approvals help by figuring out how much money buyers may be approved for. Knowing this allows buyers to pin down their budget, narrow their search, and make realistic and successful offers.

Forgetting Other Expenses

Many first time home buyers start out as renters. May people choose to buy a home in an effort to save money and gain equity. In 42 states paying a mortgage is cheaper than renting… but there’s more to home ownership than just the mortgage payment. First time home buyers, especially renters, overlook expenses that are normally covered by landlords. Additional expenses that first timers might not take into account are:
  • homeowner’s insurance
  • property taxes
  • private mortgage insurance (if the borrower puts down less than 20%)
  • HOA fees if applicable
  • utilities (which renters are already accustomed to paying but cost may be higher due to more living space)
  • and lastly appliances and furniture.
Buyers should make sure they take a reasonable estimate of these additional costs to see if the home they’re considering will be affordable for them.  

Skipping The Inspection

Home inspections are a valuable tool in deciding whether or not to buy a house. Many first time home buyers consider skipping the inspection- either thinking it’s not necessary, or in an effort to save some cash. This could be a huge mistake! No house is perfect, and a home inspection can help identify any problems home buyers may face in the future. A typical home inspection will look at:
  • the condition of the home’s heating system
  • central air conditioning system (in warmer months)
  • interior plumbing and electrical systems
  • the roof, attic and visible insulation
  • walls, ceilings, and floors
  • windows and doors
  • and most importantly, the condition of the the foundation, basement and structural components.
In addition to identifying potential issues with a home, inspectors also provide useful information on how to maintain the home in the future, helping to preserve a home’s value.   All of these mistakes are easily avoidable and taking them into consideration can help first time home buyers mitigate future problems. We offer free consultations to prospective first time home buyers, and our online application makes pre approval a breeze. At Semper we help our clients avoid these pitfalls and get them home faster, smarter and easier.

Categories: First-time homebuyers