First Time Home Buyer Tips

by Rodney Forbes on May 30, 2009

With all the talk of first time home buyers, tax credits, low interest rates, low home prices, etc., many people are asking if it’s time for them to make the move and finally buy.

With uncertainty in the economy and housing market, it’s smart to ask some important questions as to whether it’s really time to buy.

1. Check the selling prices of comparable homes in your area. You can do a quick search of MLS listings in your area.

2. See what you can afford. Find out what you would have to pay on your mortgage.

3. Find out what your total monthly housing cost would be, including taxes and homeowners insurance. In some areas, what you’ll pay for your taxes and insurance can almost double your mortgage payment. To get an idea of what you’ll pay in insurance, pick a property in the area where you want to live and make a call to a local insurance agent for an estimate. You won’t be obligated to get the insurance, but you’ll have a good idea of what you’ll pay if you buy.

4. Find out how much you’ll likely pay in closing costs. The upfront cost of settling on your home shouldn’t be overlooked. Closing costs include origination fees charged by the lender, title and settlement fees, taxes and prepaid items such as homeowners insurance or homeowner’s association fees.

5. Look at your budget and determine how a house fits into it.

6. Talk to reputable real-estate agents in your area about the real-estate climate. Do they believe prices will continue falling or do they think your area has hit bottom or will rise soon?

7. Remember to look at the big picture. While buying a house is a great way to build wealth, maintaining your investment can be labor-intensive and expensive. When unexpected costs for new appliances, roof repairs and plumbing problems crop up, there’s no landlord to turn to, and these costs can drain your bank account.

Source: wciv.com

If you are interested in buying or selling a home in the Palm Beach County area, specifically Palm Beach Gardens, Jupiter and West Palm Beach, please visit my Forbes Realty website. For frequently updated information on foreclosures, short sales, real estate news and market conditions visit my South Florida Real Estate Report blog. There are many free reports as well as free access to MLS listed properties. You can also call 561-337-4810.

 

Rodney Forbes is a licensed Realtor®, certified short sale/REO specialist and broker for Forbes Realty of South Florida Inc.

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