Why use your hard-earned cash to pay the landlord's mortgage when you could be using the rent money to buy a home of your own? That's a question many people ask themselves when they start thinking about moving out of the rental market to home ownership.
If you are thinking of buying a home in the near future, a REALTOR® can provide invaluable help in finding the right home in the right price range in the area you want to live. Through access to the Multiple Listing Service, (MLS®) a REALTOR® can give you a customized list of homes for sale that match your needs and wants and budget.
It's a big step. For most people, taking out a mortgage is the biggest financial commitment they will ever make. But buying your own home has always made sound financial sense. Here are some facts to think over when considering home ownership as opposed to renting.
A house hunting checklist will help you keep track of the advantages and drawbacks of each home. Ensure the checklist includes the basic information regarding location, asking price, annual property taxes, mortgage terms and any applicable zoning restrictions.
Exterior: Jot down your impressions of the exterior of the home, noting the lot size and shape, position of the home on the lot (facing north, south, east or west). Note the condition of the landscaping and whether the yard is fenced.
If you are 35 now and just buying your first home, you will likely be mortgage-free when you are 60 and sitting comfortably on a considerable asset.
It's highly likely your investment will appreciate considerably in 25 years. It's important, however, not to buy with the intention of making a quick fortune. Think of home buying as a sound, long-term investment.
Interior: Note whether the home has a separate front hallway. Check the windows to ensure they open and close easily and note the general condition of the doors. The kitchen is an important room in any home, so pay attention to its size, the condition of the appliances, sink, cupboard space, counter tops, flooring, lighting and electrical outlets. Be sure to ask whether any or all of the appliances are included in the sale.
It may be that a separate dining room, a family room and fireplace is important to you. Note also the size of the bedrooms and closet space and whether there are any window coverings or adjoining bathrooms. Also make note of the flooring and room colours.
Buying a home is a very effective way of saving regularly over many years. Even if you never buy into another retirement or investment plan, you are effectively putting money away for the future.
Owning a home of your own means you and your family can set down roots, get to know your community and involve yourselves in it.
Check whether the basement is full or partial, finished or unfinished and whether there is adequate room for walking about. Note whether there is a utility area and whether the washer and dryer are being sold with the house. It is also very important to ask about the type of heating, water service, plumbing (copper or other), electrical amperage and insulation.
As your REALTOR®, I will be able to help you with questions you are unsure of.