Buying a new house comes with excitement and sometimes fear. You are excited because your life-long dream of having a house is fast becoming reality. But the fear is often triggered by the thought of buying the wrong property. I understand that feeling, and nobody wants to be in a situation when they would regret their choices. So, in this article, you will learn some of the most important things to know before buying a house.
Buying a house is one of the most important decisions in your life. You have to be strategic about it. Otherwise, you may end up regretting your choice of house.
Read Also: Planning for Hidden Cost When Buying a House
So, here are some of the most important things to know before buying a house;
#1. Sewer Scope Inspection
The nature of the property’s sewer scope is one of the most important things to know before buying a house.
Regardless of how amazing a property seems, don’t make any decision to buy it without carrying out a sewer scope inspection.
Sewer scope inspection is a detailed video inspection of the sewer line that runs from the proposed property to the city sewer line. The essence of this inspection is to check if there are blockages, damage to the pipe system, and other problems that could affect the value of a property.
Trust me, a faulty sewer line is one of the most expensive things to repair in a house. And if you fail to carry out this critical inspection on a property before investing in it, you may end up spending a fortune on repairs.
So, if you are buying a home that’s more than 20 years old, it’s strongly recommended you carry out a sewer scope inspection.
Of course, you aren’t an expert in this area, so you should hire someone to handle the inspection for you. Depending on the length of the building’s plumbing system, you may spend between $100 and $1200 for a sewer scope inspection.
#2. Know the Cost of Renovating the Property
One of the most important things to know before buying a house is the cost of renovating the property. Whether the house is still in good condition or not, you will always carry out some renovation work.
For instance, you may want to fix the backyard, remodel your bathroom and kitchen, etc. All these cost money. So, it’s important to have a realistic figure about the cost of renovation before buying any property.
If you have an idea of how much you are spending on the renovation, you can discuss it with the realtor before buying the property.
Hey! Never underestimate the cost of home renovation projects. It could be very expensive. And if you fail to factor it in while negotiating the property’s price, you may be on the losing side.
When it comes to renovating your new property, try to avoid the following mistakes;
- Don’t start the renovation too early
- Again, don’t expect everything to go according to plan. In other words, you may spend more than you budgeted.
- Not setting a timeline for the renovation project.
- Not giving attention to the interior design.
- Buying giant furniture.
#3. Use a Trusted Realtor
Using a trusted realtor is one of the most important things to know before buying a house. You are less likely to make a mistake in the process of buying your dream house if you use a trusted realtor.
Well, you may think that because realtors get a cut from the sales of a home, it would affect the cost of the property. Realtors get a cut from the sale of a property, but it doesn’t affect the cost.
That’s because it’s the property’s owner (the seller) that pays the realtor, not you. However, it’s not advisable to work with the realtor listing the property. They would always protect their commission and the seller’s interest. In this case, you may end up spending more.
But if you work with a trustworthy savvy realtor, they will protect your interests and guide you through the process. They will help you get a good deal, negotiate prices, and supervise the inspection process.
Sometimes, you may pay a savvy realtor for their service, but such an additional cost is worth it.
#4. House Purchase Involves a Contract
Like most other transactions, a house purchase involves a contract. It’s one of the things to know before buying a house. The process involves documentation, signing of papers by parties involved, etc.
The way the contract will be drafted may give you the impression that the terms are rigid. And there is no room for negotiation.
But that is not true, the terms of every contract are negotiable. Don’t just sign any standard agreement given to you. Review it, understand the terms, and if they aren’t in your favor, negotiate them.
Remember, you are the one investing your money on the property. So, you need to reflect your terms in the agreement.
For instance, if you want to review the inspection, wave radon test, or subject the purchase to mortgage approval, etc, it should be reflected in the terms of the contract. A savvy realtor should be able to negotiate some of these terms in your favor.
#5. Look Beyond the Purchase Price
Looking beyond the purchase price is one of the things to know before buying a house. The purchase price is just a side of the coin. Trust me, there are other hidden costs associated with buying a house.
Even if the purchase price seems cheap, don’t be too excited to commit yourself. Look at other costs like insurance, utilities, homeowners association fees, real estate taxes, etc. All these associated costs may make you pay more than you expect.
For instance, a relatively cheap home with high taxes may cost you more than an expensive house with low taxes. Take note of this and you will always get the best real estate deal.
These are some of the things to know before buying a house. If you take note of them, you are less likely to make some rookie mistakes when buying a real estate property.