House Shopping: What To Know When Buying Your First Home

By Jane Lasky

Buying your first home is simultaneously exhilarating and daunting. So many aspects of this experience cannot be anticipated, so the best mode of operation is to learn as much as you can as you begin your search.

Stay Focused

Even though this process is a practical matter, emotions do come into play. Try to keep them at bay as you consider all of the minutiae involved. Just so you don’t miss anything, take along a list when you hit up a showing. That list should have the aspects of a home that indicate your own personal deal breakers and some less crucial attributes that would supply added value, if possible.

While on site, don’t be shy about asking questions or taking pictures to prove the right elements are there. Be sure to also capture some of the areas that you are unsure of, so you can think about whether or not you can live with these potential flaws.

Think Big

Since you are buying for the first time, consider a home that will grow with you and your needs. If you know you will be adding to your family, make sure you will be privy to the right number of bedrooms when that happy circumstance comes into play. If you will only be happy with a large master bedroom, then make note of that.

With the above in mind, also realize that some aspects of your home can easily be modified when or if the need arises. For instance, if you’re looking to expand your closet space, you can always do that at a later date. If you might want to add a pool, measure everything out to be sure there’s space.

Decorative Decisions

Changes can also be made to the decor of the home without adding outrageous expense, if you think ahead. If you have a large picture window that is already wearing roller shades, you can switch those up to other select blinds for a fresh look without breaking the bank.

Looking to eventually add drapes, roman shades or plantation shutters as window treatments in your new home? No problem. The same is true if you are eager to install blackout curtains as draperies in the bedrooms to keep the sun out of your eyes that you can control whenever the mood or need strikes.

The View

Speaking of windows, remember that the view you look out onto can be just as important an element on your wish list as the bones of the house itself. Are you a person who wants to be able to see forever from your own abode? If so, choose your initial home purchase based on that.

Likewise, if you want to be able to actually see your garden grow, be sure to buy a home that has a way to do that without having to go outdoors to do so. Sometimes, sliding glass doors will do the trick for you, as you can see in when you’re out and out when you’re in with no problem.

Eyeing The Contract

And finally, when you’ve chosen the home in which you want to invest and your offer has been accepted, get ready to do some reading. That contract you are about to sign concerns arguably the biggest purchase you will likely ever make in your lifetime so be sure the terms are exactly what you are ready to take on.

After that, celebrate! Buying a first house is a big deal, and should be toasted like any other big deal you take on. Cheers to the new purchase and your new life ahead!

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