15 Things You’ll Wish You Knew Before Buying A New Home

Buying a home can be a long and trying process; it can be difficult to keep up with so many little things that need to be considered. The following are fifteen things people often learn during the home-buying process that they wished they'd known before they bought their house. 

1. The Inspector Won't Catch Everything

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The inspector isn't perfect and could definitely miss a few things. So, getting multiple inspections before buying a new house could save you so much money in the long run. If you’re worried about the cost, the amount you’ll pay to conduct a few extra inspections is nothing compared to how much you would spend if your inspector missed something.

2. Visit the House at Different Times of the Day

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You'll never know what a neighborhood is like if you only visit once; you have to visit the house at different times. Not only should you visit the home on different days, you should also visit at different times of the say as well. It’s important to know what the neighborhood is like on weekends and at night before you commit to purchasing a home.

3. Don't Buy Property Near a School

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If you’re a parent or plan on having kids, buying a property near a school might seem like a good idea at first. But once you move in, you’ll be committing to a daily battle with parents parking in your driveway. Parents will prioritize getting good parking over respecting your driveway, especially during pick-up and drop-off times and school events. So, avoid buying a house too close to a school. 

4. Keep a Papertrail of Gifts 

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When purchasing a home, people often receive monetary gifts from family and friends. But most people don’t know that they need documented proof of where their funds are coming from. So, be sure to document all gifts; financial institutions will want to know whether your finances are coming from a gift or a loan. 

5. Set Money Aside for The Small Stuff

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After purchasing a home, so many little expenses come up; be sure to put aside some money to cover all of these. Simple things like changing the locks, switching or adding services like trash pickup, adding new light fixtures, etc. will quickly add up. These expenses should be factored into the cost of your home so you aren’t under any financial strain to finalize moving in.

6. Find a Hands-On Agent 

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Your real estate agent should work with you every step of the way to ensure that you find the home you love. A good agent's job is to learn what you’re looking for in a home and find the properties that will suit your needs. Once they’ve found a potential house, they should help you to consider what issues may arise with a property that you might not consider and make suggestions on writing offers based on their experience and knowledge. If your agent isn’t fully involved, you should find someone else.

7. Set a Limit on How Much You Can Afford 

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When applying for a mortgage or purchasing a home, don’t assume your bank and real estate agent are working in your best interest if they suggest getting something more expensive than you intended. You know how much you can afford to pay on a mortgage better than your agent or bank. Just because your income qualifies you for a certain amount doesn’t mean you have to spend that much. Set a limit and stick to it. 

8. Make a List of Your Expectations 

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You know exactly what you're looking for in a home; don’t be afraid to share that with your agent. Think about your expectations, write down a list of your non-negotiables and a list of the nice-to-haves, and then share it with your agent. This will make it much easier for your agent to zero in on your non-negotiables to give you the home of your dreams.

9. Hire Third-Party Help 

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The real estate industry thrives on networking, so your real estate agent will likely suggest that they know someone who can help you with the many additional services you’ll need. However, agents tend to recommend their friends and family members who work in fields related to buying a home, like inspectors, title companies, or lawyers. To avoid getting the wrong impression of the home's quality, always hire third-party help. 

10. Doublecheck the Location 

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The immediate neighbors aren't the only things to consider when determining if a property's location is right for you. You also have to check for businesses, airports, etc. Factories, train stations, and airports can be a hassle to live near but can be missed during your initial visit. With a quick search online, you can better understand what type of neighborhood you’re potentially moving into.

11. Don't Settle 

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You should know what you want and how much you're willing to pay and not settle for less.  Agents will often talk about how tough the real estate market is or encourage you to make an offer, but there’s always another house. Don’t settle for a price, location, or layout that doesn’t fit your expectations. Buying a home isn’t something you want to rush into.

12. Review The Paperwork

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There’s a saying that you should always read the fine print, which can be applied to purchasing a home. It's common for the paperwork to contain slight errors, so always go over everything before signing. It doesn’t matter if your agent or lawyer has reviewed the documents; you need to read through all the paperwork you’ll be signing at closing beforehand to make sure you know exactly what you’re agreeing to.

13. Talk to Your Potential Neighbors

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Neighbors are a great source of information on a neighborhood; always talk to your potential neighbors before buying a house. If you buy the property, these will be the people you live next to for the foreseeable future. Start by introducing yourself and let them know you’re interested in the house and want to know more about the neighborhood. The information you get from them will be more valuable than you realize.

14. Document Every Agreement With the Seller

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Sellers can make many promises they forget to honor during the selling process. To protect yourself, always document every deal with the seller. From the simplest agreement, like stating they’d had a leaky faucet fixed, to bigger arrangements, like promising the larger appliances come with the home, document everything in writing with a signature and date. 

15. Consider Your Future Plans

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Do you plan on living in this home for the foreseeable future, or will you move again in a couple of years? If you’re in search of your forever home, it should be somewhere that suits your unique personality and lifestyle. However, if you’re purchasing a home that you plan on selling in a few years, broad market appeal is an important factor to consider. Go into purchasing a home knowing what your intentions are. 


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She started her blog, The Money Dreamer, when she realized the 9-5 job was not the lifestyle she wanted anymore. After designing for a while, she wanted a more meaningful life, which was freedom, so she decided to venture out. She took action so that she can live her dream life and decided to help people to live theirs by helping them how to save, budget, and invest.

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