Buying your first home is one of the biggest purchases you will ever make. For many people, it is the biggest purchase they ever make. When you are preparing to make a purchase of this magnitude, it is critical that you carefully consider all the financial issues that coincide with the purchase.
Your real estate lawyer is a great resource for discussing your financial concerns regarding your new home. If you have any questions about the following topics or others that arise during the home buying process, talk to your lawyer about them.
Calculate Your Potential New Home’s Expenses
When you calculate whether you can afford a home, look beyond its mortgage. This is only one of the recurring expenses you will face if you decide to purchase it. The home’s utility bills and property taxes are also recurring expenses you will face.
These are not the only expenses you need to keep in mind, either. Homes and their systems require maintenance, and the bigger the home, the biggest these costs tend to be. Determine the average maintenance bill for an HVAC system in homes the size of the home you are considering to get a sense of what you will pay regularly for this service. Then calculate the average maintenance costs for other systems in the home.
Do not forget repairs and refurbishments. If you are considering buying an older home, have the home inspector look closely at the systems in the home, its structures, and components like the roof and windows to determine how long you have until they will likely need to be replaced. Older homes also tend to be less efficient than newer ones, so keep that in mind when you calculate your utility bills.
Remember, Certain Expenses Tend to Go Up, Not Down
Do not count on your tax bill going down. When you are determining whether you can afford a certain home, give yourself plenty of “wiggle room” for expenses. If you buy a home that you can barely afford now, it could become an unaffordable home in just a few years.
Do You Have an Emergency Fund?
Even in new homes, things break. Accidents happen. Are you financially prepared to handle these kinds of problem? If not, you are not financially prepared to buy a home.
The emergency fund is not just for household emergencies. It is also to ensure that you can continue to cover your living expenses if you suddenly lose your job or suffer an injury that forces you out of work.
Work with an Experienced Real Estate Lawyer
When you are buying a home, it is important that you work with an experienced real estate lawyer who can represent you in the buying process. In addition to your questions about the legal aspects of buying a home, your lawyer can answer other real estate questions and give you advice. To get started with a member of our firm, contact Moen Sheehan Meyer, Ltd. today to set up your initial legal consultation with us.