What do you wish you knew before buying your house?

So me and my fiancé are looking into buying a house just before our wedding next year, so early spring of 2021. We are in our 20’s and have never owned before so I’m trying to gather all the info I can even though it’s nearly a year away. We are looking to buy on Boston’s north shore which is a very expensive area which is exciting and daunting. Single family homes in towns with good school systems here start around 450-500k (for a small house) and condos are around 350k+. We do not have kids yet, but in case we ever do I want to be in a safe town with good schools, and of course that adds to price. We are weighing the options of condos and single family homes as our budget is around a 450-600k max, we plan to put down about half in cash and finance the rest. As a first time buyer, I’m SURE there are a ton of things I’m not even thinking about. What do you wish you knew before buying, or what tips in general do you have? 

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  • 1 month ago

    Landscaping can be expensive in that area. You'll be cutting a lot of grass and trimming a lot of trees and shrubs.

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  • 1 month ago

    Tip:  Get an inspection before you buy.  Make sure it includes the roof.

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  • 1 month ago

    One of the things you need to look at is the future of the area itself. If there is going to be development near where you want to buy, or if they plan to tear down parks or raze buildings--or put in roads--or other major area changes, it will impact your home's value and desirability. EXAMPLE: I know a couple who bought a townhouse in a city, then after having renovated at great cost, found out that there was going to be a major tear-down on the block behind them. The razed a whole block--and turned the area into a landfill. Needless to say, now the couple can't sell that place for anything--the smell and the noise are ridiculous--and they're stuck with it. They will never recoup their investment. This might sound like a one-time thing, but it happens a lot more than you realize. Even in nice, expensive areas. 

    You're going to spend nearly half a million dollars. You need to check the neighborhood, the future plans of the city, the future development, the infrastructure around you (roads, bridges, public transportation) and how well-maintained it is.  You already know it's expensive, and you already know the schools will be okay--but that's just the gravy.  When you buy property in an old city like Boston, you are buying history--but you're also buying the possibility of major renovations on any property due to water, sewer, electric, asbestos or other problems. It's very easy to get caught up in the "looks" of a house and ignore the issues it may have currently, or in the future. Make sure you get an inspector who does a thorough job--you'll pay extra, but it is worth every penny. And don't use a seller's agent--or listing agent. GET YOUR OWN AGENT. You do not want an agent that is working for the seller--you want the agent to work for YOU and your needs. Set a limit on what you will spend. DON'T go over it. Keep all viewings within that budget. Don't be enticed by "great deals" that someone wants you to look at that may be out of your price range. Be really firm about this. 

    Research average utility bills. Shop around for a good mortgage rate. Don't just let yourself be told what to do. There are many areas where you can actually take classes for first-time homebuyers--they walk you through all the pitfalls of buying, owning and maintaining. I suggest you look for those at your local community center.  

    There is a lot you can do ahead of time. Just remember--this is probably the biggest investment you will ever make. You need to be thorough and careful. Good luck! Happy house hunting!

    Source(s): I've bought several houses.
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  • how to pay for it

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  • 1 month ago

    If buying a condo it is essential to make any offer contingent upon approval of the condo association's CC&R's, financial records and past meeting minutes.  How well run the condo association is can have a very direct impact on value so it is essential you are as well informed as any other owner (or better yet, any other condo board member).  Good Luck.

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  • 1 month ago

    Plan on paying between $10k and $20k in closing costs NOT including your down payment.

    Figure out your monthly budget and before you buy start budgeting that much by saving the difference. For example if you think your mortgage payment is going to be $2500/ month and you currently rent an apartment for $1200/ month then you should be able to put $1300 per month into savings without touching it and without sacrificing other parts of your financial goals. if you can't do this every month for a year then you can't afford a $2500/ month house payment.

    Remember that taxes and insurance will be added to the loan payment so your monthly payment will be a lot more than just the loan repayment amount that you get from an online calculator.

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  • 1 month ago

    Buy a new or relatively new house. Old houses can be a maintenance headache.

  • Maxi
    Lv 7
    1 month ago

    Don't buy a house with ANYONE unless you are already married to that person............ is the best advice I can give you.

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    • Michelle1 month agoReport

      You’re supposed to buy a house around your wedding date, how else is he supposed to carry me over the alter? The house would be just before the wedding. We’re pretty traditional like that lol, it’s how our families want it since they are paying. 

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  • Anonymous
    1 month ago

    Your budget is $450 - 600K as a first time home buyer? You're an idiot.

  • Bob
    Lv 5
    1 month ago

    I wish I knew that prices would fall and the house would be worth 25 thousand less than we paid for it 15 years ago. 

    • Michelle1 month agoReport

      So you bought before the big housing bubble burst during the recession? The same thing happened to my parents. Currently my rent is 24K per year and prices don’t fall much in the Boston area right on the ocean so even if it fell, it would still be more worth it then paying the insane rent here.

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