If you’ve always rented a house and now you’re thinking about buying, you should take some things into account. You’re making a big step that deserves attention.
Buying a house may seem like a scary step. It means leaving the comfortable nest of a rented place and moving away from an always present landlord that can help you with any problems that may arise.
When you own your house, you should always have an emergency fund. The maintenance -any busted pipe, leaks or broken windows- will be yours to handle and pay.
Maybe you’re not used to paying some expenses like water and trash, because they were included in your rent payment. As a house owner, you’ll receive lots of bills, including these unfamiliar ones. These should be considered in your planned budget.
That said, the first step into buying a house is to get pre-approved for a loan. This will help you keep a down-to-earth attitude. You’ll focus your search only on those properties that you can afford.
Don’t underestimate the role of a real estate agent. You can ask your friends and family for recommendations, and start interviewing agents. Surely, they will charge a commission, but it’s important that you also consider how you feel around them; hopefully, comfortable and confident.
Once you’ve found your dream house, be prepared to negotiate. Keep in mind that you’ll have to pay for several closing costs and moving-in expenses, so try not to go over your budget on the negotiation!