So you have decided to finally buy a house. Your very first house for that matter. No matter the reason – whether it is because you’ve gotten fed up of the obnoxious amount that your landlord charges for rent or because you’ve finally saved up enough money to buy a place of your own – this is a smart choice that you are very unlikely to regret.
Buying a home for the first time is a really big deal, and such should not be treated with levity. It is a major step that should be taken very carefully.
However, because buying a home for the first time is one of the biggest purchases in life, you may feel jittery and nervous – which is perfectly okay.
On the other hand, the nerves may set you up for some mistakes that will leave an unpleasant taste in your mouth for years to come.
Not to worry, this article will provide you with some tips that will make you less likely to make any of the rookie mistakes. So let’s delve in.
- Budget Smartly
There is budgeting, and then there is smart budgeting. When making budgets for your house, it is imperative you budget smartly. what does that mean?
A lot of first time home buyers make the mistake of only budgeting for money to cover the house and maybe real estate agent fees. This is a terrible mistake, but it is understandable. It is, after all, their first time buying a house.
When you are making budgets for the purchase of a house, you should also include things like closing costs, and also costs for repairs. When you are moving into a home, it is inevitable that you will need to fix or replace some things in the new house.
While these things are generally not expensive, they can add up to become a sizable amount, so is smart to include them in your budget.
While we are on the topic of budgets, why do you even need a budget in the first place? Shouldn’t you just go ahead and make the purchase without the stress of budgeting?
Having a budget helps to prevent you from overspending. Having a budget in place may save you from the trap of buying a home only to realize that you’ve gone broke. It also helps you keep the whole process in perspective.
So get out your pen and paper and start making a budget.
- Create A Negotiable And Non-Negotiable List
Get a book and a pen. Now write down the things that you simply cannot do without on one page. If you are a person who likes to cook, having a nice sized and airy kitchen will probably be on this list. Name this list your non-negotiable list.
On another page, create a list of things that you would like to have, but can forgo. For example, you may like to have all rooms en-suite, but you may be willing to settle for just a fair number of bathrooms and toilets.
You should try to keep the lists as realistic as possible and keep your budget in mind when creating them, especially the non-negotiable list. When you go house hunting, go with the lists and check off each item.
However, you should keep in mind that since you are not building from scratch, it would be difficult to find a house that seems tailormade for you so you should be willing to be flexible and pick something similar to what you want. This doesn’t mean you should settle for a house that you hate, as that can get very frustrating after you’ve lived in it for a while.
- Use A Real Estate Agent
Using a real estate agent will help you get your dream house (or like we said, something close) in considerably less time than it would take you. Not only that, but they also probably know more about houses than you do, so they can get you a really good value for your money.
All you have to do is let him know what you are looking for, and you can sit back and relax while he does the hunting. Sounds cool, right?
- Negotiate Strongly
A lot of times, sellers are open to negotiations, and will often reduce their asking price if you negotiate well enough.
You should never be afraid to negotiate. If you’re feeling awkward about the process, think about what the extra money could do. You can get that centrepiece you’ve had your eyes on for a while.
So roll up your sleeves and negotiate!
- Consider Mortgaging
You don’t have to carry the weight of funding the purchase all alone. There are a lot of financial institutions in Nigeria that offer mortgaging packages. So if you find out that you simply can’t afford the costs of purchase, you can simply decide to opt for a mortgage.
A benefit of getting a mortgage is that you don’t have to go broke when buying a house or save up for years. You can just apply for a mortgage at any of the institutions that offer it.
With these tips, you are less likely to make a terrible mistake or buy a house that you really detest. You can just cruise through the processes like a pro.