Buying a home for you and your family sounds exciting. Yet, you need to be patient and careful. You don’t want to spend all your money on the house you like. There are many things you have to in mind and compare many different factors.

1. Checklist for the first-time home buyer

If you are a first-time buyer you need to be extra careful. You probably have more questions and more things to consider. Maybe some of these tips can help you make this important decision.

Are you ready?

Having your own home sounds heavenly, but you should make sure you are ready for this change in your life. Before you get into this consider some of these important factors. Your budget is only one of them.

Another thing to think about is the reason you want to buy your first home. It’s important that buying a home doesn’t do any harm to your other life goals.

Contact more mortgage agents

When you decide to buy a home, you have to be ready to have your new best friend – mortgage! It’s something you’ll have to deal with for the next several years or more. This is why you should choose the right type of mortgage that fits your budget and plans.

So, contacting more mortgage agents would be a clever thing to do. You will get a better image of what to expect. Make sure you check and compare everything carefully before taking the final step.

Where do you want to live?

It’s great to live in a nice house, but the neighborhood is a very important feature, too. Consider all advantages and disadvantages of living in a certain area. If you plan on moving to Pennsylvania you will need to research the neighborhood you plan on moving to, if you have children you will need to research the schools in the area, walking scores, local utility providers and other services, etc.

If you don’t like something about your future home’s design, you can always remodel or redecorate it. Yet, you can’t change the neighborhood. So, make sure you will spend your life in a nice and secure area, that provides all the features that are important to you.

2. Home-buying mistakes

No matter how careful, people often make some mistakes when making important life decisions.

Buying a home you can’t afford

Most people can’t resist the temptation to buy a house they like, even though they won’t be able to afford some other things in the future. Instead of this impulsive reaction, consider your funds and make a good budget plan. Be realistic about your wishes and the real possibilities.

Not saving enough

One can never have too much money and saving is always a good decision. If you can’t save the whole amount of money for your new home, then make sure to save enough for the down payment.

One of the most common mistakes people make is saving only for a down payment. You should ensure to have enough money for closing costs also.

3. Home-buying tips

Here are some tips that can help you avoid some of typical first-time home buyers’ mistakes.

Check your credit score

Whether you are going to get the mortgage you want depends on your credit score. You don’t have to have a perfect score, but make sure it is the highest possible. So, make sure to pay off your old debts before you enter the home-buying procedure.  In order to keep your credit in good standing so you do not have credit issues in the future it is important that you pay your bills such as your Pennsylvania rent, utilities, and other expenses on time.

Use the First-time home buyer advantage

If you are a first-time home buyer you have the right to some tax breaks and different state programs. They can make buying your first home a less stressful experience for you. Don’t miss this advantage!

Make an inspection

It’s always a good idea to make an inspection of the house before buying it. This is the place where you are going to live and you want everything to be in good condition.

Check if all doors and locks work properly or if there is mold anywhere. It is also wise to check the efficiency of the home; if it a old Pennsylvania home is it insulated, are their drafts, are the windows single paned. Determining the efficiency of the home can give you a better estimate on the average utility bills for your Pennsylvania home. For instance, since your HVAC system accounts for the majority of your energy cost then if you have a older home with drafts you can expect higher electricity bills.

Be Energy Wise

You should also make sure that the house is properly sealed and insulated. Poorly insulated homes could cause waste of energy and electric rates and utility bills to increase.  To get the most bang for your utility dollars it is important to do an energy comparison.  By comparing different energy companies in your area you are often able to find a better rate.  Especially if you live in a state like Texas, Ohio, or Pennsylvania where utility companies are unregulated.

Final thoughts

Buying a home can be a long and exhausting process. But, if you use some of these tips, the whole thing can become much easier. Good luck!