Let’s face it – purchasing a house for the first time can be an exciting but equally stressful time. In Fort McMurray where the average house sells for over $500,000, buying a home can be a time of confusion and doubt while trying to figure out how to pull off this large transaction.
There are a number of things to consider when thinking about purchasing your first home:
➢ What type of home are you looking for? Duplexes, bungalows and condos make good first time purchases due to their price
➢ Do you have a large enough down payment? Typically lenders will require at least 5% down payment on a property up to $500,000, with any portion exceeding this amount requiring 10% down
➢ Have you established a list of wants v. needs? Wants would be granite countertops, stainless steel appliances etc… whereas needs are having a two adult, one child family and, therefore, needing at least two bedrooms
➢ Are you financially stable enough to pay for a mortgage, plus property taxes and interest, on top of setting money aside for any home repairs that might appear?
One thing to keep in mind when breaking into the market for the first time is that you will not likely find a house with all of the features that you want because, in most cases, you can’t afford them. The key when looking for a home is to find a property that meets your most important needs, while keeping in line with what you can afford. Being practical is important in reducing stress.
One of the first steps you can take to significantly reduce stress during the buying process is to make an appointment at a bank or with a mortgage broker to get prequalified for a mortgage. There is no greater disappointment than finding your dream home and getting an accepted offer only to be let down when you discover you can’t secure a mortgage when factoring in your income and debt load. It’s also important to make sure you have a knowledgeable REALTOR® on your side who can take the time to answer any questions you have about the process and alleviate some of the stress that comes with buying a home. When you get right into the midst of a real estate deal, people can find themselves overwhelmed with the many decisions that suddenly need to be made – with the right professionals in your corner, it can be a smooth transaction for everyone involved.
When looking back on your first home purchase, it should be a time you look back on with a smile, not regret. Do your part to get educated on the process!