Buying a house first time is never a great experience, and most of the first time buyers go in without much knowledge of the markets they’re pursuing. I certainly wish I had someone guiding me on my first time, but this doesn’t mean others can’t learn from my experiences. The market is a lot better now than it was when me and my wife set out to get our comfortable two-bedroom home in Palm Beach County, Southeast Florida, but some of our experiences can help you make some better choices.
With the option of mortgage loans, it is easy to get carried away and over-reach. When we set out into the market a couple of years ago, the market wasn’t doing so well; a lot of the houses in Southeast Florida were not in the best condition as people were desperate to sell, and there were quite a few foreclosures to be seen. On top of that, with pricing rising in the double digits, it was difficult to find something we could afford, where we wouldn’t also have to end up spending thousands on management and repair work later.
In 2015 all that is expected to change, with better houses on the market and prices finally stabilizing you can probably afford a better home, but be sure to keep your debt to income ratio in mind when looking at home prices. Also, prices are still expected to rise by 3.2%, which is close to the U.S. average, so it is better to buy now before the inflation sets in. It is good to have knowledge of the current real estate market so you can get the best prices in the area.
One thing we did do when we bought our two-bedroom was think about the future. We don’t have any kids yet, but is something that’s in the cards in the coming years, and we planned to stay in this home for quite some time. Accordingly, we chose a nice, clean, family neighborhood with a good school and parks nearby; a good place to raise a family. All of these are important considerations for anyone buying a home, as it is a long-term investment.
The hard part comes when you’re taking out the mortgage to pay for the property. We ran into a lot of problems getting a good mortgage deal, especially since we hadn’t paid much attention to our FICO scores. What we learnt was that you have to consistently maintain a good credit report and stay in the light about your current credit scores to ensure you get good deals on your mortgage. You can’t just turn it around overnight right before you set out to buy.
That being said, the current market is looking great for homebuyers, as mortgage rates for both fixed and adjustable rate mortgages are fairly low in Southeast Florida. So if you have a good enough application, you will do great.
The most important thing to do, however, is to get in touch with a reputable Real Estate firm or agent who you can trust to get you the best deals in your budget. My first few times were no good, but this last time I tried out Individual Property Solutions inc, who were very helpful, and introduced us to some very good listings, one of which we now reside in now.