FAQ First Time Home Buyer Questions
Hey everyone, welcome back to Shades of Tay – blog style!
Today’s post is a collaboration with Steevie Soucie, from the VolpeDirosa Team at Keller Williams Realty Centres. You will be seeing some more collaboration posts in the future on my blog! I think it’s super fun to connect with local entrepreneurs for their insights and expertise on topics you and I may want to learn more about. I came up with some questions that real estate agents are frequently asked, and tried to focus mainly on questions first time home buyers would ask. I myself am a first time home buyer and I know a lot of young adults who are starting to think about that big house purchase as well. Steevie kindly provided her great knowledge – her answers give great information and background for anyone looking to buy their first house! She’s got an outstanding passion for this industry and was super excited about the opportunity to share her thoughts.
Why not just rent instead of buy?
Do you want to spend months or years of your life paying down someone else’s mortgage with your hard-earned money? The answer is simple, you want to be putting your money towards your own investment, not someone else’s. Another thing to consider when renting is that if your landlord decides to sell the house that you and your family are living in and the new owners decide they don’t want to assume the tenants then you are forced to relocate and all the months you paid in rent at that house are out of your pocket and you’re out of a place to live. When you invest in your own house, you are the one that gets to decide to sell or not and you are the one that walks away with money in your pocket.
What is the advantage for me to have an agent for the buying process?
This is a good question. Many people have a misunderstanding of how real estate works. Many people think that if a house is listed for sale, they have to use the listing agent to purchase the house. This is not the case and in fact, is not the best option. When you use the listing agent to purchase a property they have for sale, they are working in the best interest of the seller not yours. The benefit of having a buying agent is that they are working in your best interest to get you the best possible deal (lowest price) on the property you love. The selling agent is doing the exact opposite on behalf of the sellers and trying to get them the absolute highest price for their property. Do you want someone who is going to get you the lowest price and protect you or someone who is trying to get their sellers the highest price? Another important factor that some people may not know is that having a buying agent’s services is completely free to you. The money from the sale comes from the seller’s pocket, not the buyers. Why wouldn’t you want to have someone working for you for free to get you the best deal that can be done?
When in my home search should I contact an agent?
At any point you are thinking about buying you can contact an agent. An agent will guide you on the proper steps to take. The most important thing is speaking to your bank or mortgage broker because you can’t start shopping until you know what you can afford. Agents work closely with banks and mortgage brokers so they may be able to recommend you to someone they know and trust if you haven’t already spoke to someone before contacting them.
What can a first time home buyer expect in the searching and buying process?
They should expect to look at a number of different properties. Its good to look at a different places to get an idea of value for the dollar. You might get more of what you’re looking for in one house for less money than another up the street. Be patient. It is also not uncommon that the first house that people look at often end up being the one that they purchase but its always good to explore all options.
What is an estimated good down payment for a first time home buyer?
Generally, the down payment for the mortgage is 5% for first time home buyers but it can vary depending on the purchase price and what you can afford. It’s best to meet with your bank or a mortgage broker before you start looking at houses to see what you’re able to afford.
What hidden fees often come up as a surprise to first time home buyers?
Buyers should be aware of closing costs. They can usually expect home inspection cost, lawyer fees, land transfer tax, possible property appraisal fee’s so you can provide an appraisal report to your lender, mortgage insurance and possible prepaid utilities adjustments. Also, there is always the chance that as a first-time home buyer you might not be buying a brand-new, move-in ready house, so it’s important to understand there may be possible minor repairs to be done or even major repairs. A home inspection should always be done!
In your experience what is the most important thing to most first time home buyers?
Like most buyers in general I would say finding a property that they really like that’s suitable for them at a good price. Having an agent work with them that they feel comfortable with as well because it’s the first time they’ve done this and it’s the biggest transaction of your life and can be very scary!
Do you think the market will eventually come down? Explain.
The market will always fluctuate. We will experience hot markets, low market, seller’s markets, buyer’s markets and balanced markets. There are many factors that affect the changes in the housing market such as interest rates, mortgage rates, population, supply & demand, etc. No one has a crystal ball to predict the future!
What is your biggest piece of advice to first time home buyers?
Speak to your bank or A mortgage broker before you start looking so you know what you can afford!
If you have any additional questions that were not mentioned in my post, please feel free to give Steevie a shout. I will link her social media accounts below! Steevie is hustling hard in this industry, so you might see her smiling face on some signs around town or you might even see her knocking on your door - make sure you say HI!