If you’ve recently purchased or are in the market for your first home, congratulations. This is a huge event and one that is filled with lots of excitement and anticipation. However, it also can be stressful if you’re not prepared for what lies ahead. Here, we’ll guide you through some of the more common issues related to buying and moving into a new home. These home selling tips will make your move as stress-free as possible.
It starts with your budget.
Sure, it’s nice to dream and plan for a four-bedroom, 2½-bath home on an acre of land outside the city, but that may not be your reality. The Motley Fool notes that your house payment, including insurance and escrow, should not exceed 28% of your gross monthly income. A couple with a combined income of $60,000 annually, assuming $600 in car payments and $125 in credit card debt each month, should be able to comfortably afford a home costing $180,000. You’ll only stress yourself out looking at $300,000 houses that you can’t afford.
Get what you want.
Depending on your budget and availability, you may have to compromise on features and amenities. However, you should always make a list of what you want in a home, but be prepared to prioritize.
You need a helping hand.
Completing a real estate transaction is a complicated process, going much deeper than simply shelling out a down payment. Partner with a local buyer’s agent, who is a real estate professional familiar with the ins and outs of buying and selling. He or she can walk you through everything from selecting a home that suits your current and future needs to find a trustworthy mortgage provider.
Pay attention to the neighborhood.
The home you choose is only half of the equation. Before you get too emotionally attached, spend some time within a three-mile radius of the property. Drive around at night and on the weekends to see the area in “off” hours.
Sadly, the first house you place an offer on may not become your home. It’s a seller’s market, and competition is stiff. It is not uncommon for buyers to engage in bidding wars; homes often sell for an above-asking price, and you need to know when to walk away.
Moving day is near.
The moment you make the decision to buy a new home is the moment you should begin planning. Up to two months ahead of time, you can start getting quotes from moving companies and clearing out any personal belongings you no longer need. Once things get a little closer, a week out, for instance, make sure you have a checklist ready to keep moving day running smoothly. Go ahead and prep your moving day survival kit, which should include common household items, cash, a phone charger, hygiene products, and medication.
Pack and unpack.
Packing for your move is perhaps the most stressful part of the process. HireAHelper recommends labeling every box so that your movers know exactly where things go upon arrival. You can use color-coded tape to make things easier. Make sure to purchase the right boxes and ask your movers for suggestions on large pieces of furniture, televisions, and irreplaceable family heirlooms.
Get to know the neighbors.
No matter where you live, the existing neighbors are well aware that there is a vacancy in the neighborhood. Go ahead and break the ice by introducing yourself within the first week of moving in. This will help set the tone of your relationships with your new neighbors and perhaps lead to new friendships.
While your moving experience will be unique to you, the above-mentioned situations are pretty universal. Buying your first home involves a number of moving parts (no pun intended) and things may not always go your way. But with a little planning and help from a pro, you will finally have a place to call your own. Most importantly, as excited as you are, remember to sit back, take a deep breath, and relax.
Contents of this article was assisted by guest author Natalie Jones. You can visit her website by clicking here.