We are planning to buy our first house… yay! Tips & advice plz

posted 2 years ago in Home
Post # 16
Member
24 posts
Newbee
  • Wedding: June 2018

I agree with everything said by previous posters especially regarding budget. My husband spent way less than we were pre-approved for because we wanted significant equity in the home (paid 20% of the home’s value upfront in cash). Consider all other fees including house inspection fees (some sellers will pay but not in every housing market, we paid for ours), closing costs, house insurance, title insurance etc – these add up quickly so make sure to budget appropriately.

In addition, be mindful of contractor costs in your area for renovations. We bought an older home that needed some cosmetic work. What was initially a 12k budget to repaint the entire interior and replace the carpeting downstairs with hardwood floors and new baseboard is now roughly 20k. I also wanted to paint the cabinetry in the kitchen but when I got a contractor estimate of $8k that was put on hold. I know these prices seem insane but we live outside DC.

Renovating a house is a great way to contain costs but be wary unless you have a lot of cash upfront. It also takes a lot of time coordinating with the various trades and placing orders for materials, etc. Just some things to think about.

Post # 17
Member
1640 posts
Bumble bee

Not sure if this has been mentioned, but I recommend going to any house you’re interest in and standing around at about 5pm, and then again around 9pm.  Get a feel for how much traffic, how much road noise, how safe it feels.  

Also, try out your commute during actual commute hours.  

Post # 18
Member
1640 posts
Bumble bee

Another thing we experienced, redfin and zillow were not accurate on their current listings.  Whenever we found a property that was a nice house, nice lot, nice price and up for sale were actually sold a few months prior.  It’s a nice tool to get an idea of what you might like in your area but the MLS will be much much much more accurate and less painful.  It sucks to go, oh this house is reasonable and follow-up to find out it was sold 3 months earlier.  ><

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