First Time Homebuyer, Avoid these 10 mistakes

  1. New Debt - Imagine finding your dream home, getting your offer accepted, completing your inspections and appraisal, getting your loan approved but unable to close. It is a nightmare scenario that some people find themselves in because they didn't wait to take out new debt. Most times I believe buyers in these situations get excited and want to start shopping for their new home needs. One problem: it's not yours until you close. Lenders will do one last debt check after approval and before close to see if there is any new debt. If so, it can push back a close date or even make you not qualify for the loan. So as much as you want to take out store credit for new appliances and furniture or order new flooring, Don't do it. Wait until it's official.

  2. Housing Expenses - when calculating what is an affordable monthly payment during the planning of a new home purchase it is important to remember that there is more than a mortgage payment. Property taxes, homeowners insurance, as well as any applicable HOA dues or Condo fees. The location alone can dictate these monthly cost and make a home become unaffordable.

  3. Indecision - Many prospective buyers miss out on their desired home because they simply can't make the decision in time. Not because they are not able but because they are not ready. Along with a preapproval it is extremely important to have a set criteria. Purchase price, Time on market, Location, Amenities, Needs vs Wants List. etc. Once a home fits your criteria you will be in a position to make an offer.

  4. Waving Contingencies - This one can be a big mistake which some buyers will make in trying to make an offer more attractive to a seller. A contingency is a qualifier to your offer. Basically, a buyer is telling a seller I will purchase this home if....Usually it's due to an appraisal, getting approved for loan , or selling their home first. When a contingency is waved it means you may be on the hook for the Earnest Money Deposit regardless.

  5. Buy too High - In a seller's market sometimes the accepted offer is the one who overpays. For a first time homebuyer future investment potential should be a key driving force in most situations. Therefore buying too high could cap any future returns on your home purchase investment.

  6. Unreal Makeover - Everyone loves HGTV and they make these homemakers look so easy sometimes. The truth is these are professionals on a show. In reality , zoning, permits, associations and cost can prevent desired makeovers.

  7. TLC vs Turnkey - The mistake can be made with both options. A home needing a little TLC can drive up cost and deplete reserves. On the other hand a turnkey home can have everything you want but drive up purchase price and increase monthly payments.

  8. Not Patient enough - There is a fine line between decisiveness and patience. We can't control the market. Inventory is what it is , when it is. Some buyers will simply settle for a home instead of waiting to see what else shows on the market.

  9. No Professional help - Realtors provide professional expertise especially as a first time buyer. Since the seller will generally pay a Realtor commission for both buyer and selling it usually makes sense to enlist the help of a Realtor. You want someone to have your best interest in mind and work on finding you the right home to fit your needs. If y u choose to forgo a Realtor consider using a real estate attorney to review your purchase contact.

  10. 1 visit offer - If you love a home and want to make an offer after one visit, great. Try to make atleast a 2nd viewing. Whether its at a different time of day or weekend or with a second set of eyes. Buyers sometimes don't realized things like noise, traffic, neighbors, etc until after moving in.