Whether you’re buying your first home or your third home, there are still some very common pitfalls to avoid. Many times these mistakes are made because of ego or ignorance. However, it should be noted that working with the right REALTOR® (or team of REALTORS®) can help you avoid costly mistakes altogether.
But, for education sakes, let's go through some common mistakes that buyers can make:
- Buying the most expensive home on the block. Remember that your home is an investment. Homes within the neighbourhood escalate in value when the homes around it go up. If your home is the highest standard by which all homes are measured by, your value will increase much less than others.
- Falling in love with a house that is unattainable or out of your budget. We often want more than we can afford. BEFORE you begin searching for your next home, analyze your financial situation and decide what payment you can realistically afford. Talk to a financial representative or mortgage broker about current rates, your credit score and your ability to pay. A great preliminary move is to get pre-approved for a mortgage. It will give you the amount you can spend before you start looking so you don’t fall in love with more than you can afford.
- Paying too much for a house because of its neighbourhood. Remember that despite what our culture often tells us, we are not measured by the postal code that we keep. In addition, it is a poor investment to buy a Calgary home for sale that you know is not worth what you are paying just because it is in a fancy or popular neighbourhood.
- Buying in an area near commercial zoning without checking into zoning. You see it every day in the news - people who are taking issue with their city planners because a new grocery store or mall is planning to come in next door to their neighbourhood. Very often these people could have or should have known that there was a possibility this could happen to them because the land around them was zoned commercial. Make sure you check into zoning before you purchase.
- Buying a very nice home in a bad neighbourhood. You can fix up a house, but you can’t fix a neighbourhood. If you have checked property values and the homes around yours are going down, that is a red flag. It may look like a good deal, but in the end, you’re likely to lose money on your investment.
- Rushing into the decision. Make sure that once you have found a home for sale that you would like to live in, that you have thought over carefully all that comes with the home, the neighbourhood and the lifestyle it will bring. Remember that once you have made an offer and it is accepted, it can be very difficult if not impossible to back out of the deal. Make sure that your decisions are well-informed and educated ones before sealing the deal.
- Skipping the home inspection. Many homebuyers skip the inspection process to save money. A home inspection will help you make a more educated decision about the home and will alleviate any ‘surprise’ expenditures for you in the future once you’re in the home. Never skip a home inspection, as it can inform you about some very expensive problems that you cannot see in the home yourself.
If you have questions about homebuying, please feel free to contact us, we are happy to help!