(This post is part of our Free First Time HomeBuyers’ course. For more information and/or to sign up, click on this link, or select ‘Education’ under the ‘Buy’ drop-down menu above.)
A lot of young home buyers overlook this question- but it’s a big one. Are you psychologically ready to own a home? A few questions can help you find out:
- Are you ready to settle down and commit to spending the next decade of your life in this home? What are your plans and goals for the next decade? Are you torn a bunch of different ways?
- Can you fix a leak? Do you know how to, or do you even know who to call? Because if you’re not handy, you need to be able to find the right pros to fix issues within the house. Even if the house is brand new, you’ll run into issues everywhere that you never noticed before.
- Are you only buying a house as an “investment”? On average, homes only increase about 3% in value before being sold- which means your decision needs to be one based on non-monetary goals.
- Are you able to easily afford it? This goes right along with everything covered in Part I- and it’s the most important psychological factor. You don’t want to sign up for a panic attack every month when you have to pay bills. It should be well within your means (again, ideally not exceeding 30% of your income). It’s a lot easier to upgrade than it is to downgrade.
- Do you have enough of a financial cushion to not sweat it if you’re out of work for a few months? Again, taking care of routine maintenance is the only stress you want associated with your house.
- Are you planning other big things in the near future? Chances are, if you’re planning a wedding, it’s probably not the best time to also buy a house- otherwise, that honeymoon phase will end real quick after you both realize the huge burdens you have on your shoulders. (Want to know the quickest way to a divorce?)
- Did you look at the sticker price as the amount the house would cost? (Don’t be a financial amateur).
- Are you responsible enough? Owning a home is a huge responsibility. There’s no landlord who can come fix your dishwasher or replace the light bulb in the 20-foot ceiling. You’re on your own, with the entire financial value of that house resting on your shoulders. Again, no pressure.
So… are you ready?
It’s a question that ultimately only you can answer. And if the answer is “no”, that’s okay- you now know what you need to do to be ready to make the answer “yes” very soon. You can always reach out to your NextHome Element Realty Agent for help all along the way.