Are You a First Time Home Buyer?
As of 2013, according to the U.S. Census Bureau, 64.5% of Americans own their own home. However, only 29% of those people own their home "free and clear," meaning they no longer owe the bank, or anyone else, for a home mortgage. According to Real Estate ABC, average home costs range from $159,500 to $282,000, depending on the region you are looking to settle in. Wherever you go, it is clear that buying a home will be a huge financial decision that will affect decades of your life. If you are looking for first time home buying tips, here are three of the best.
- Do Not Bite Off More Than You Can Chew
One of the contributing factors to the economic collapse beginning in 2007, now known as the Great Recession, was unfair and predatory lending practices on the part of banks to homeowners, according to NBC News. Lending institutions were giving first time home buyers financing in huge amounts that they could not possibly hope to sustain payments on. Eventually, the inevitable happened. As a result, according to NC State University, millions of homes were repossessed by banks.
Protect yourself and use an independent mortgage calculator, like Bankrate, to figure out what you can actually afford to be paying on a house through the years.
- Take Advantage of First Time Home Buyers Programs
Likely one of the most crucial first time home buying tips is to do your research and take advantage of first time home buyers benefits. The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development has a complete list of first time home buyers programs in all 50 states. As you might imagine, these benefits for buying a home first time vary depending on your location. For instance, if you are looking at homes in Louisville KY, then you may be eligible for first time home buyers programs in Bowling Green, Elizabethtown, and elsewhere. Use the Department of Housing's webpage to find more specific information for your area.
- Do Not Buy on the Spot
Obviously, buying a home is probably the single largest investment you will make in your lifetime, so it's important to be choosy. You will want to shop around to find not only the best home aesthetically but the best home financially. However, as About.com's Home Buying & Selling points out, do not take too long looking around for your new home, as others will likely be going through home buying steps at the same time, potentially driving up the price on the home you have been looking at. Balance your needs and wants quickly but responsibly to get the home that's the best fit for you.
No matter if you are looking at homes for sale in Louisville KY or in New York City, keep these three tips in mind for a better, potentially less expensive first home buying experience. Many people are surprised to find that they are eligible for first time home buyers programs that can help them get their dream home. Now that you know, get out their and find your slice of paradise!