When newlyweds purchase their first home, what should their goal be?
Well, here are some simple recommendations that will help:
Pay a little extra each month to the principle!
- The cost of forgoing a dinner out and applying that each month to extra principal payments can take years off the mortgage term.
Maintain the property.
- New buyers will pay at or above market for well-maintained assets that do not have deferred maintenance if the property is ever resold. Internet websites, like Angie's List, that rates venders and can help you make the best maintenance and renovation decisions.
Enhance the property.
- Simple enhancements can provide your family resale potential and excellent returns. This is also a great security feature for a family not interested in selling anytime soon.
Protest your property taxes every year!
- Assessors use big data to determine your home's assessed value. But are they concluding your house could be assessed higher than your neighbors house? Do local laws call for both market value and “equalization,” whereby houses in your neighborhood have to be equally assessed? Real Estate taxes are of a homeowners biggest annual expenses, and you need to stay on top of it, because government continues to get bigger and is grabbing for more revenue from homeowners.
Stay on top of your utility costs.
- Deregulation across most of the US has allowed homeowners the opportunity to competitively bid utility services with multiple vendors. Review vendor’s utility charges annually. And look for opportunities to make your home more efficient: seal windows, fluctuate air conditioning and heating temperatures when you are not home (pre programmed electronic thermostats easily return the value above cost in the investment), plant trees to create shade from the sun, prune trees in cold climates, and use fans to supplement cooling.
To find a home price point target first, most buyers look at entry level homes. Then they search all listings, pending sales, and actual sales in the selected market. With technology, that does not have to be your immediate community. Potential homeowners should search all properties using multiple websites and you’ll get to see homes which have lengthy days on market. Downloading the listings into an excel spreadsheet allows sorting and analysis that most websites do not provide. After a few weeks, new listings will be recognized immediately.
Now it is time to get pre-approved for your loan. It will go much smoother when the seller knows you have the financial backing of a lender, better yet, able to pay cash. Cash buyers typically get moved to the front of the list when making offers.