First-Time Home Buyers
Are you buying your first home? Congratulations! This is an exciting time for you. We also know how overwhelming with the first experience. Use the following guide to avoid the common blunders that first-time buyers make when buying a home in Calgary.
Pre-Qualification: Have a meeting with a mortgage broker to discuss your situation and how much you can afford to spend on a home.
Pre-Approval: Gain some “street cred” on the market with a pre-approval. It lets the sellers know that your offer will be accepted by the bank and is more genuine. A pre-approval is where you apply for the mortgage you’d like to pay and you get a written commitment from the bank that you are pre-qualified to receive that mortgage payment. As long as you meet the criteria laid out by the bank, the sellers know you are presenting serious offers. The best part is that most lenders allow you to pay the nominal fees when you close on the house.
Needs vs. Wants: Do you NEED a pool? Not really. Not as much as you NEED a third bedroom. Categorize your needs and wants into two lists. The “needs” list must be checked off before you can look at your wants list. This allows you to quickly look through homes and discard the houses that don’t fit your criteria. It may have an incredible bonus room downstairs complete with gym area, but that one bathroom is going to get tight with your family of 5.
Professional Representation: Consider finding a real estate agent that can guide you along the way, making smarter choices than if you had been on your own.
Searching Folder: Many new home buyers in Calgary like to create a folder to keep all their relevant info at hand. This could include:
- Detailed maps of the area you’re looking
- Properties that your agent has already shown you. It’s easy to misremember which property you’ve already seen after a few.
- Paper and notes
- Pictures of relevant areas of houses you’ve seen
Be Relevant: Take some time to visualize that house as your own, picturing where you’d put your stuff, how you’d move throughout your day, what it would feel like to come home here. Is there enough light? Can the rooms fit your furniture? Does the flow of the house work for you? It’s important that you take enough time to really consider the location, the amenities, the transportation to and from the home. HUrried decisions are bad decisions in home buying.
Be Diligent: Just because you’ve found a great home doesn’t mean that you’re done. Have some professionals look at the home with a trained eye. Have an inspection and contingencies written into the contract. Have the place examined by an inspector. Do the second walkthrough before closing. Check that all inclusions have been met before the final day, including all materials, fixtures, and anything else you’ve written into the contract
This could be one of the most important decisions you ever make, so take a trusted real estate agent with you. Contact us to start a conversation today with one of our friendly and experienced real estate agents.