Things to consider before buying your first house

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Image: Getty
Image: Getty

Buying a house is 1 of the biggest financial decisions you’ll ever make, and nothing can fully prepare you for it.

Although making the decision to invest in a home can cause you anxiety, it’s quite exciting too. And when you’re armed with the right info, you can shop for a house, apply for a bond, and close the deal with confidence.

Wynand van Vuuren, spokesperson at King Price has put together some tips to help you have a great first (or next) home-buying experience:

Be realistic with your budget 

This is a biggie. Before you jump onto property sites and start looking at houses, take a detailed look at your finances and determine what you can afford. Once that’s done, you can begin the hunt, considering things like security, travel time to work, and hospitals and schools in the area. Keep in mind what’s important and ensure that the location is convenient for you and your family while also giving you great value for your money.

Use a trusted estate agent 

Start the process right and use a trusted estate agent. A savvy agent who works WITH you can protect your interests and guide you through the buying process… From negotiating a price to navigating home inspections. After all, they’re the experts! 

Take your time

Love at first sight is amazing but it doesn’t really resonate with buying a home. Buying a home is a big decision that needs to be well thought out. A great way to affirm your decision is to call on someone you trust, who can objectively help you and ensure that you’re making the right choice before you seal the deal. Cast a wide net and explore all your options so that you’re best placed when you finally make the decision to purchase.

Beware of hidden costs

‘T’s and C’s apply’ is more than a catch phrase, so don’t overlook or ignore them. Make an effort to interrogate all the docs before you sign. Extra costs include transfer fees, agent fees, levies and electricity. Find out all the little details before committing yourself to anything, to make sure you’ve accounted for them.

Cover your castle

When you finally find the perfect place to put down roots, cover it. Insurance is the 1 luxury you can’t afford not to have. It’s important for homeowners to get enough buildings insurance to cover what it’ll cost, at the time of the claim, to repair or rebuild the property from the foundations up. This amount should include the big things, like your boundary walls, solar panels and swimming pool, and all the small things like taps and door knobs.

And don’t be afraid to shop around… The bank may offer you insurance along with your finance, but you’re well within our rights to find an insurer that speaks your language. And don’t forget about your sentimental belongings that make your castle your home... Ensure your stock-up on home contents insurance too.

Making the decision to buy a home doesn’t need to be a burden for the next 20 years. If you can afford to, pay a little extra each month. It‘ll decrease your interest and help you settle your bond much quicker.

Now go forth and conquer, future homeowner.

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