4 Common House-Hunting Mistakes You Should Avoid

According to the US Census Bureau, the national homeownership rate stands at 64.8% currently. Homeownership is a common goal that many people look forward to through building or buying their property. If you intend to purchase your home, you will undoubtedly go house-hunting to find the right property. However, there are many mistakes you can make when shopping for a house due to factors like emotions, time constraints, and pressure. Here are four of the common house-hunting mistakes to avoid.

Not knowing how much you can afford to spend

Knowing how much you can spend on a house is critical to narrow down your search and empower you during negotiations and bidding. In addition, a budget is necessary to prevent you from falling in love with a house that is well outside what you can afford. Consequently, it is prudent to discover how much you can afford to borrow before you even start your house hunting. You can talk to a home loan lender or mortgage broker to assess your credit history, monthly expenses, and other essential financial information to estimate how much you can afford. Alternatively, you can get an online mortgage quote to get a fair idea of how much a lender is willing to offer you.

Having no clearly defined priorities Many realtors agree that having a list of things you want in a house is necessary since this will guide you on your search. This list must be split into must-haves, desired items, and things you can do without. For instance, you may need three bedrooms, would prefer a back deck, and would like but can do without a fireplace. Knowing your priorities helps you know deal-breakers and decide quickly. In addition, it can give you focus as a homeowner, so keep this in mind.

Not using real estate agents

Real estate agents are invaluable in today's hot real estate market, so it is prudent to partner with one for successful house hunting. A real estate agent can help you move quickly and make an excellent offer in today's vibrant seller's market. In addition, your real estate agent can help you navigate all the fine details that accompany home buying. Many experts recommend looking for real estate agents who are realtors, so keep this in mind. Both professionals are certified, but realtors are members of the National Association of Realtors (NAR) bound by a strict code of ethics and may have additional certifications.

Offering more than the house is worth

It isn't uncommon for a house hunter to get sucked into a bidding war with other prospective buyers eyeing the same house. These bidding wars can easily lead to you offering a higher price than the home is worth. However, doing this is not advisable since it can create financing issues if your lender thinks the property costs less than what you have offered. In addition, you can encounter problems when reselling if the market conditions are similar or worse than they were when you purchased the house. Therefore, research the price of similar properties in the neighborhood to know the correct price range your home falls in and avoid overpaying.