5 Things I Wish I Knew Before I Bought My First House

How do you know what’s best when buying a home. A good deal of passion and an ounce of common sense? Maybe it should be the other way around, but that is not what happens for most buyers. Many different influences are part of the process when purchasing your first or even your last home. If you are looking to buy a home in the near future, consider these tips as a guide to making the right decision for YOU!

Advice will be given to you frequently and most likely unsolicited. There is a ton of information available on the internet about the process of purchasing a home, and just what and how to go about the process. Location, size, style and other details you never thought about are explained, and the pros and cons will eventually become a blur.

Sifting through everything that is written is a challenge and becomes more than a tad overwhelming to know what is important to you personally. Reality TV might be entertaining but it doesn’t paint the real picture of what home buying is about or how the process really works. Seems that everyone that has ever lived in a home, or owns a home, wants to help in your decision-making process.

Advice and opinions are given out freely and a decent amount of the info is fuelled with passion and another person’s life experiences. The most important thing to remember is that you need to buy a home that fits your needs and your wallet.


Buy what you need – No more no less

Buying a home is a serious, life-changing event that will be part of your lifetime financial success. Preparing to buy a home should start early on in life before financial mistakes are made. Following professional advice about credit, job planning and the future can only help. When it is time to look for a house and you are ready the next step is to decide on what home will work for you.

Where to begin? Always begin with the bank and get pre-qualified. Once you know what a bank will lend you, then the choices of what to spend and how to budget become more clear. Once you have a budget in place, then consider these 5 tips on how to decide what home will work for you.

Bigger is not always better

How much space do you really need, and how much space can you truly afford? Things to think about would be the expense of heating, cooling and maintaining a large home. When a home is bigger, everything costs more. Repairs and renovations are something to consider. To replace a roof is a big expense, and the bigger the roof the higher the costs. So, while bigger might be what you want, consider what you actually will need and work from that concept. Knowing who will be living in the home ten years from the day you move in is worth thinking about.

Relatives Are Not Real Estate Agents

Many family members have bought houses before. They love to share their past experiences when buying a home. Do remember, that they most likely purchased a home in a different location or time period or price range. Their advice may not work for you today. The buying and selling of real estate are constantly changing and knowing the current market, local concerns, laws, and norms are what your real estate agent, local councils and authorities know best.

Be sure to seek out the proper professionals all along the way to guide you in the process. Your real estate agent, building inspectors, and loan officers are all part of the team that will help get you to the finish line. While the family is looking out to give you good advice it is bound to be either very general or very personal. Maybe even a wish list of what they knew about the home they bought. Make your home choices and decisions on what is right for you.

Check Out the Neighbourhood

As the saying goes, Location, location, location!! This is a huge truth in the value of a property. When falling in love with a home, you will need to research out the neighbourhood on your own. Many clients want to know who lives on the block if the neighbourhood has children and local crime.

While I can’t provide all those details, I can recommend that walking around a neighbourhood, knocking on doors and driving around an area to familiarize you with the community is a great idea. Many clients seek info from the local police department to find out how quiet a neighbourhood is.

Swimming pools are only great if you use them

What is your lifestyle like? If you have a pool, then you will need to maintain it. Safety first… and the entire cost of a pool for the summers should be filtered into the budget.  Most residents with pools start using them in December and then close them around April. It is a relatively short season, but a great option for a vacation right in your own backyard all summer long. If you are someone that travels Europe for six weeks every summer, the expense of a pool may not be in your best interest. Something to consider and make an educated decision about.

Landscaping – Tiny trees grow big

Have you seen instantly beautiful landscaping when buyers purchase a new home? Many landscape architects do a fabulous job of transforming the bland look of a dirt lawn into a beautifully manicured property. Thing is, I see it more often than not, that tiny bushes and trees are placed too close together, and too close to the house.

Baby trees grow big and their roots are huge. Not helpful and could actually cause problems down the road. They will need to be removed at the major expense and possible damage to foundations, plumbing, decks, and foundations could occur. When choosing the type of plants that go near the home be sure to have an experienced landscaper pick plants that don’t grow too big.

The list of reasons on how to buy a home can be never-ending. Some buyers will purchase giant sized luxury homes with every amenity imaginable while others will opt for small and compact. Whatever the type of home you are dreaming of, make sure you have thought through the practicalities, both good and bad, of that style of home. The expenses of buying and selling a home in Perth can be huge and not ones that you will want to duplicate if you don’t choose wisely.

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