Some Mistakes to Avoid When Buying a Home

Some Mistakes to Avoid When Buying a Home

Excited….. Overwhelmed….
These are two emotions often experienced when buying a home. Even more so if you are a first time home buyer. If you’ve already started the search process, make sure you’re not making some common mistakes. Your upcoming investment could end up being a bad decision if you overlook some important facts about home ownership and sign that contract before you’re really ready.

Here are some key and common mistakes first time home buyers need to avoid:

Mistake #1 – Searching for the dream home before getting pre-qualified

Save yourself the disappointment of not being able to afford the home of your dreams by getting pre-qualified for your loan before you start house hunting. Instead of picking out a price range and searching listings, take the time to talk to a lender about how much house you can realistically afford and what the monthly payment breakdown – with all taxes and other fees included – will be. The amount you are pre-qualified for will help you create a realistic budget for your home search.

Mistake #2 – Thinking short term

It’s easy to get carried away with that new home search and overlook some important information about the neighborhood you would move to, future developments in the area and the resale value of your home. As a first-time homebuyer, the idea of selling your home in the near future probably isn’t at the top of the priority list, but it should be. Buy that first house with the idea that you can resell it with some ease should your plans change in five years. Hold off on buying the super charming or quirky house until you are financially established and can afford the charm.

You also need to think about the long-term effects of your decision to buy that home. If the neighborhood is undergoing any type of redevelopment phase, the value of your home could increase in the near future. If you end up buying an older home in hopes it will appreciate in value, keep in mind that your investment could be a risky one.

Mistake #3 – Making an emotional decision

While the right home for you is a matter of personal preference and affordability, you need to separate your emotions from the decision before signing the contract. Turning a blind eye on that moldy basement or creaky floorboards because you’re enamored with the architectural style of the house can lead to financial troubles in the future. You want to make sure you’re investing in a home that will offer you a good return on your investment and ideally has a good resale value.

Take the time to run the numbers, create a pro and con list of each property and use an objective approach for your homebuying decision. Remember that even real estate agents and homeowners selling a home on their own will be pitching their property to prospective buyers using all types of marketing strategies. Keep an open mind, but also do your homework to make sure you’re investing in a home that you can be happy with for years to come.

Mistake #4 – Overlooking hidden costs

In addition to that monthly mortgage payment, you need to consider the cost of home maintenance, utilities and property taxes. If you are buying an older home, you may end up needing money to cover the cost of repairs and renovations. While the selling price can give you a fair idea of what you will be investing for your home, you also need to look at all of the extra costs required to maintain your home and cover property taxes. A great mortgage banker will break down property taxes and fees involved in the mortgage process up front.

Turn to a home inspector for a list of existing or potential problems that may need to be taken care of in the near future. Consider getting quotes from renovation specialists or builders in the area to price out potential updates and home improvement projects. Also, don’t overlook moving costs and extra furniture you might have to purchase to furnish a larger living space.

DISCLAIMER: Neither Indiana USDA Mortgages ( nor Luminate Home Loans is affiliated with any government agencies, including the USDA.


  1. Virtual Private Server
    Mar 22, 2017

    As a buyer is navigating through the home buying and mortgage process with the assistance of their Realtor®, one of the most important pieces of advice is to not add any additional debts. Adding too much debt when going through the mortgage process can mess up a buyers debt-to-income ratios, which ultimately can result in being denied a mortgage.

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    Feb 22, 2019

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