Is 2023 your year to be a first-time homeowner? The housing market continues to favor buyers and show promise for amazing home-buying opportunities this year. If you are looking to take advantage of the market this year but aren’t ready to make the jump into home ownership this instant, start building these habits to help you get there!
1. Check your budget for saving opportunities.
Smaller expenses add up over time. By consistently going over your budget, you can prevent overspending and stock those pennies in your savings account. A thorough way to do this is to examine your transactions on your account, tally up the extra expenses and strategize on how to do more with less. Here are some ideas:
By trimming those alone, you could easily save at least $150 per month. Start small and cut back on what you can. Cutting back is hard, but it’s not a life sentence. Think of it as a short-term solution for long-term gain.
2. Know what you can handle.
When you’re renting, all of the home maintenance fees are covered. Tiny repairs, like a new door handle, or big repairs, like a new roof, are not your problem. But surprise! When it’s your name on the mortgage, you are the one responsible for the upkeep. You will have to cover maintenance, utilities, HOA dues, and more. On average, this is what homeowners spend per month in addition to their mortgage.
Maybe you have your eye on a home, but you’re not sure if you can handle the financial responsibility. Tally up the general upkeep costs and the mortgage, subtract what you are already paying for your current lease, and see if you can afford what’s left over.
In the scenario above, you would need an additional $1801 monthly to cover the additional costs of home ownership. Calculating how much extra money you need to be a homeowner and actually putting it into practice for a few months can give you a realistic picture.
Owning a house is a major investment and comes with extra costs. You want to be sure that you’re ready for that level of financial responsibility. If your dream home is not achievable to own right now, you can start with a smaller home and work your way up.
3. Remember that research is your friend.
When you buy a home, you're not only buying a house that you and your family can be comfortable in for the foreseeable future, but you’re also investing in real estate. You need to know the full scope of your investment and investigate beyond just the financial responsibility.
Often times when you work with a realtor (if they’re a good one), they’ll take time to learn what your priorities are in a home and find not only a home but a neighborhood that meets your needs. But you don’t just have to take their word, research is something you can do well in advance of buying a home. The more you know…
Here are good resources to help answer some common questions asked when preparing for the home-buying process and the start of investigating local housing options.
There are so many amazing online resources to help you be well-informed on your home-buying journey. And you don’t need to wait until you are ready to jump into the market to grow your knowledge in local real estate. Utilize online tools, and of course, it’s always a good idea to talk to a professional. A professional in real estate can give additional insight and data to help your unique solution that oftentimes you would not be privy to. You should buy a home when you feel that you are fully equipped for the adventure. Start preparing yourself now, so when the time comes for you to purchase your first home, you “have your whereabouts” in the housing market.
Never be afraid to reach out! We are your local lenders and are only a phone call away. Feel free to contact us anytime. We will do our best to answer your questions and point you in the right direction.