Buying a house comes off as one of the most important financial decisions of life, since home purchase requires a hefty investment and a lot of planning. Therefore, it becomes imperative for investors (especially first-time buyers) to have proper insights into the homebuying process prior to commencing with the property finalization. If you begin your house hunt without prior knowledge of the steps involved (and the paperwork required), you may find the entire process quite overwhelming – something which can lead you to make mistakes and incur potential losses.

The first step in the long journey is to narrow down the specifics of the kind of house you want to buy. Once you decide the type of house you need and the area you want to live in, you can commence with the house hunt process. This can be a long and arduous task; but with the advent of online real estate portals, homebuying has become a convenient gig.

Consider the case of Pakistan where local online real estate portals, including Prop, facilitate the house purchase effort; by providing users innumerable listings to choose from. With these online property advertisers at our fingertips, property search has become a lot easier than it was prior to the advent of technology. You no longer have to visit every house you are interested in, since you can now narrow down your choices through online comparisons.

Similarly, having a list of tips to remind you of the essentials of buying a house makes the task much easier. It can save you time and even money. Here are a few critical points to remember while undertaking a house purchase:

Get to know the neighborhood

Gauging the area you plan on buying a house in is of utmost importance. Taking a walk around the block or visiting any parks nearby can help you get acquainted with the residents and get a sense of the ambiance of the vicinity. Try to talk to people you meet on the street to get their opinion about your neighborhood – apprise them of your concerns/queries. You can keep a lookout for children playing on the streets; which generally serves as a safety/security marker for any area. You could even visit the local police office to ask about the crime rates of the locality. Another useful tip is to stroll around the neighbourhood during the day before commencing with the locality relocation. You should invest in a house only if you feel comfortable with the locality.

Create a budget plan yourself

While buying a house, you should be the only one deciding your budget. Third parties, such as real estate agents and banks, should not be framing your affordability. Your finances can mislead you. They may look great on paper, but the statistics do not take into account your personal goals. Your budget is not only restricted to your mortgage payments but also includes future renovation gigs, home insurance, taxes, and maintenance costs.

Professionals say that a person can only afford to pay a mortgage which is equal to one-third of their income. Agents and banks usually provide an estimate which is higher. So, be wary of taking their word for this important decision. 

Make an objective opinion regarding the property

At the time of a house visit, make sure that you have an objective opinion of the property. Do not fall in love with the house as love at first sight is a common occurrence and can lead you to make mistakes you might regret later. Leave your heart at the door of the house you visit and use your mind come up with a decision. If you fall in love with a property, you start to imagine your life there. Having an objective opinion from there on becomes very difficult. You start to make compromises on essential things, such as your need for a bigger backyard or the even the price. This may really hurt in the long-run so do not make any rash decisions. Take your time to visit other properties and make multiple visits to this one as well. This will allow you to put things into perspective and avoid any hasty slipups.

No need to succumb to pressure

Sometimes during the process, you can come across a tough situation. You may find the house of your dreams but the amount you’ll have to pay higher than what you had planned, or you might succumb to pressure and place an offer on a house you like but are unsure of it still. You may even find the perfect house and feel rushed by your agent to place an offer when you know nothing about the area. 

Always remember that if you feel you are not ready to invest in a house or place an offer, you should never secure the deal. Do not succumb to the pressure of any person or situation. House purchase is an important decision which requires hefty investments. So, only put your money into something you are completely sure about. You should not make a rushed decision during this process. 

Buying a new house is always an exciting opportunity. It can be just as enjoyable as it can be exhausting. Making sure you do not fall for fake advices in this overwhelming process. Enter the marketplace as an informed buyer; with prior information about the common mistakes first-time buyers usually make. The important thing is to remember your needs as well as your affordability. You can be slightly flexible on these grounds, but making too many concessions can lead to you making big mistakes. Having a list of important tips is a handy way to go about the process.

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