5 Common Mistakes First Time Homebuyers Make and How to Avoid Them

by Christina Yang 12/08/2019

Buying your first home is undoubtedly a long and complex process for someone who has little to no experience in the subject. Your average first-time homeowner learns as they go, with the help of their real estate agent and mortgage lender.

But, even so, first-time buyers often make many mistakes along the way that they could have avoided with prior knowledge and preparation.

In today’s article, we’re going to cover 5 of the most common mistakes that first-time homebuyers make when purchasing a home. From the first house you look at up until closing on your first home, we’ll cover common mistakes from each step of the way to give you the knowledge you need to make the best home buying decisions.

1. Shopping for homes preemptively

Once you decide that you’re interested in potentially buying a home in the near future, it’s tempting to hop online and start looking at listings. But, searching for your dream home at this stage is a poor use of your time.

It’s best to use this time to start thinking about the bigger picture. Have you secured financial aspects of owning a home, such as a down payment, a solid credit score, and two years of steady employment history?

You’ll also need to have a clear picture of what you want your life to look like for the next 5-7 years. Will you still want to live in the same area, or will your job lead you elsewhere?

These are all questions to ask yourself before you start house hunting that will inform your process along the way and make your hunt a lot easier.

2. Not knowing your budget

It’s a common mistake for first-time buyers to go into the house hunting process without a clearly mapped budget. You want to make sure that after all of your expenses (mortgage payment, utilities, bills, debt, etc.) that you still have leftover income for savings, retirement, and an emergency fund.

Make a detailed spreadsheet of your expenses and determine how much you can afford each month before you start shopping for mortgages.

3. Borrowing the maximum amount

While it may be tempting to buy the most expensive house you can get approved for, there are a number of reasons this might be a bad idea for you, financially. Stretching your budget each month is putting yourself at risk for not being able to contribute to savings, retirement, and emergency funds.

Furthermore, you may find that the extra square-footage you purchased wasn’t worth having to cut corners in other areas of your life, like hobbies, entertainment, and dining out.

4. Forgetting important expenses

If you’re currently renting an apartment, you might be unaware of some of the lesser-known costs of homeownership. Your chosen lender will provide you with an estimate of the closing costs, which you’ll have to budget for.

However, there are also maintenance, repairs, utilities, and other bills that you’ll have to figure into your monthly budget.

5. Waiving contingencies or giving the benefit of the doubt

While it may seem like an act of goodwill to give the seller the benefit of the doubt when it comes to things like home inspections, it’s usually a bad idea to waive contingencies.

The process of purchasing a home, along with a purchase contract, have been designed to protect both your interests and the seller’s interests. It isn’t selfish to want to know exactly what you’re getting into when making a purchase as significant as a home.

About the Author
Author

Christina Yang

Christina Yang was born in America and raised in Taiwan during her younger years. Christina has been living in  Sonoma County for the past 20 years, working in the Service Industry, mainly  in restaurants. Customer Service has been a leading factor in her success with the consumer. She understands the emotions involved in Buying & Selling homes. Christina prides herself on using good listening & communications skills. She is fluent in Mandarin & English.  Christina considers her clients as family and truly has their best interest at heart. Christina resides in the city of Santa Rosa with her husband and two children.  

Thinking of Buying or Selling a home?  With Christina you have a friend and a trusted adviser in Real Estate. 

Christina 是位专业的房地产经纪人,能说一口流利的普通话和英语。她可以提供给您最迅速与专业的地产服务。她用心倾听客户的需要,为您寻找您理想的居家环境。秉持诚信为人处事的原则,她以客人的利益为优先。无论是自住还是投资,买房或卖房,Christina 都能一路提供您专业的服务。服务范围包括:各类住宅、房屋买卖、投资,免费咨询,房屋估价。

Christina 已经在湾区居住了20年,这里拥有全美最怡人的气候,也是美国房产最受欢迎的地区之一。在这之前她和她的家人一起生活在台湾。所以她深深的理解东西方文化之间的差异,也因此和客戶的交流可以更加流畅和易懂。她有强大的国际视野,而这一切都来自於这些年广泛的全球业务。同时她也在全球各地旅行,丰富的阅历为她的全球业务提供了更多的支援。
Christina 热爱她的工作,能够实现客人的梦想,就是她最大的梦想!

如果您想与 Christina 联络,请打707-591-5496或发电邮。如果您在大陆,请发电邮或是微信 (帳號:CHRISTINA_K_YANG),請留下您的电话号码,Christina 会盡快打電話給您,直接与您通话。