Begin Your Home Search with the Right Budget

Ready to buy a new home? Not so fast! You’ll first want to establish a budget to understand exactly what you can afford month after month.

What does it take to set up a homebuying budget? Here are three tips to help you establish the right homebuying budget.

1. Consider Your Monthly Expenses

How much do you spend on food, electricity and other monthly essentials? You’ll want to consider these costs closely before you begin your search for the perfect home.

Ultimately, your monthly expenses can play an important role in your ability to afford your dream house. And if you can assess your monthly expenses, you can map out your home costs accordingly.

Make a list of your monthly expenses versus your monthly earnings. Then, consider if there are non-essential items that you can remove from your monthly budget.

Remember, if you save money now, you may be better equipped to land your dream house when you kick off you your home search. If you can cut non-essential items from your monthly expenses, you can start saving for a down payment on a new house.

2. Get Pre-Approved for a Mortgage

Banks and credit unions across the United States offer a wide range of mortgage options. Review all of the mortgage options at your disposal, and you should have no trouble getting pre-approved for a mortgage that meets your needs.

Adjustable- and fixed-rate mortgages are two of the most common mortgage options for homebuyers. However, if you discuss your financial needs with a bank or credit union, this lender may be able to provide you with additional mortgage options as well.

After you are pre-approved for a mortgage, you will be able to set a price range for your home search. As a result, you can narrow your search and accelerate the process of finding the perfect home at the best price.

3. Consult with a Real Estate Agent

Real estate agents are available to assist you throughout the homebuying journey. These real estate professionals can put you in touch with lenders, keep you informed about new homes that fall within your price range and even offer tips to establish a homebuying budget.

Perhaps best of all, real estate agents will make it easy for you to explore a broad array of homes that match your budget. These real estate agents can help you determine which homes you can afford – and which ones you can’t – and ensure that you can stick to your homebuying budget.

Your real estate agent is committed to helping you get the best results, and he or she is happy to respond to any homebuying queries. That way, you can receive expert guidance as you start your search for your ideal residence.

When it comes to buying a home, there is no reason to browse the real estate market on your own. Instead, work with an experienced real estate agent, and you can find a great home at a budget-friendly price.

Can A Seller Back Out Of The Sale?

If you are selling a home, often, you hear of buyers backing out at the last minute due to financing difficulties or an inspection issue. While less common, it’s also not unheard of for the seller themselves to actually back out of the sale of a home. 

Living in one place for a long time goes along with a strong emotional attachment to that place. Signing a contract, however, does not take into account these strong emotional ties that a seller may have to a home. Once a contract is signed, you have a legal obligation and have shown clear intent to sell the home. This could put you in a serious legal bind as a seller.

What If You’re Having Second Thoughts?

Ideally, before you even sell your home, you’ll have thought the decision through with a clear list of pros and cons. If you didn’t do this for some reason, you may want to sit down and re-examine all of the reasons you wanted to sell your home in the first place. Then, you’ll want to look at all of the reasons that you want to stay in the home. 

Why Do We Move?

Often, people decide to sell heir homes based on life circumstances and needs. If you have changed jobs and found a home closer to your new workplace, backing out of the sale of your home might not be the best idea. Your home may be too big as the kids have grown and you want to downsize. Your family may have outgrown your old home and you need a larger space for everyone to be comfortable. These are all great reasons to move. However, our deep emotional attachments to our homes can sometimes hinder us from seeing this clearly.

You Need A Good Reason To Back Out Of A Sale

Sellers don’t have the same rights as buyers when it comes to buying a home. There is no “grace period” for sellers that will allow them to back out without question. If you do decide that you want to stay, you have the option of buying yourself out. You’ll need to consider what costs the buyer has put into trying to buy your home as well. If the buyer has been deeply inconvenienced by your rescinding of the sale, you could end up paying out quite a bit to get your home back. For this reason, you really, really have to want it for the decision to take your home back to make sense. You could end up needing to reimburse the buyer for things like:

  • Temporary housing rentals
  • Deposits
  • Storage costs
  • Inspection fees
  • Legal fees

Your listing agent is involved in this as well. Not only have you affected another party greatly by your decision not to sell, but you have cost your realtor time and money. They could end up suing you for lost expenses and commission. In other words, backing out of the sale of your home could be a smooth transition, or it could be a really big legal headache.

Read Every Contract

While buying and selling a home requires a lot of signatures, make sure you understand what you’re signing throughout the process. Your contracts could state something that helps to give you an out. A common item on contracts for sellers is “contingent upon seller finding suitable housing.” This would have had to have been present on your sales contract. Another saving clause is “gaining required approval from family members.” 

Buyer’s remorse is still more common than seller’s remorse, but this kind of thing does happen. Just understand what the consequences are before you decide to back out of the sale of your home.

How Soon Can You Refinance Your Home After You Buy?

If you have just purchased a home, you have the option to refinance your home soon. Just because you can refinance your home doesn’t mean that you should. How long you should wait to refinance your home depends on a few things including:

  • Your refinancing goals
  • The rules of your lender
  • If your mortgage has a pre-payment penalty clause

Goals

Your goals for refinancing are among the most important things when considering whether to refinance. Lenders typically won’t refinance a loan that you have secured in the last 120-180 days, so if you’re looking to lower your monthly payments, you may have to shop for a new lender.    

The Type Of Loan You Have

If your financial situation has changed, it may be smart to change the type of loan that you have. Oftentimes, changing the rate and the terms of the loan can give you the extra freedom that you need for your loan and your life. 

Pay Off Your Mortgage Faster

If you do a cash-in refinance, this could be a smart way for you to build equity for your financial future and help you to secure a lower rate for your mortgage. Keep in mind that FHA loans are a bit different when it comes to paying down your mortgage. The FHA streamline program requires that you wait a minimum of 6 months before you refinance. 

Pre-payment Penalties

 Before you refinance your home, you’ll need to double-check to ensure that your mortgage doesn’t have a pre-payment penalty. If you do have one of these clauses included in your loan agreement, you should consult your lender to make sure that refinancing is a smart move for you.

Lender’s Rules

Every lender has different rules as to how quickly you can refinance your mortgage. You may also need to meet certain qualifications in order to go ahead with the refinancing. 

As tempting as it can be to try and get a lower mortgage rate, you may want to hold off on refinancing for a variety of reasons. Remember that every time you refinance your home, you’ll need to pay closing costs and other fees. While it may be a savings in the long term, it could cost you some up front cash. 

The best course of action is ideally to shop for  a lender and a mortgage rate that will suit your needs from the beginning. While no one can completely predict a changing market, you can shop around and find the right rate and loan for you at the time.

Bring Your A-Game to the House Selling Journey

It generally is a good idea to bring your A-game to the home selling journey. Because if you fail to put your best foot forward, it may take many weeks or months to stir up interest in your residence.

Ultimately, there are lots of things that you can do to generate interest in your home, such as:

1. Bolster Your Home’s Curb Appeal

Your home only gets one chance to make a positive first impression on buyers. If your residence boasts exceptional curb appeal, your house is sure to make a great first impression.

Typically, upgrading a house’s curb appeal can be quick and simple. Performing lawn care tasks like trimming the hedges and removing debris from walkways is ideal. Also, you may want to fix any cracked or damaged home siding.

If you need help with home exterior enhancements, you can always reach out to local professionals for assistance as well. By hiring home improvement specialists, you can bolster your residence’s curb appeal without delay.

2. Set an Aggressive Initial Asking Price

The initial asking price you set for your home can have far-flung effects on the house selling journey. If you establish an aggressive initial asking price for your house, you could accelerate the home selling cycle.

To determine the best price for your home, it may be beneficial to conduct an appraisal. Thanks to an appraisal, you can receive a property valuation that you can use to help you decide how to price your house.

In addition, you may want to perform an inspection before you list your residence. After an inspection, you’ll receive a report that details any underlying problems with your house. You then can use this report to prioritize home repairs and complete property upgrades so you can get the best price for your residence.

3. Work with a Real Estate Agent

A real estate agent knows what it takes to sell a home as quickly as possible. At the same time, a real estate agent understands how to help a seller maximize his or her house sale earnings. Thus, a real estate agent can provide insights and recommendations that allow you to achieve your desired home selling results.

With support from a real estate agent, you can receive expert guidance as you navigate the home selling journey. A real estate agent will work with you throughout this journey and ensure you can get the help you need to succeed. Plus, a real estate agent will respond to any of your home selling questions and teach you everything you need to know about selling a residence.

When it comes to selling a home, it is important to work hard to accomplish your goals. If you take advantage of the aforementioned tips, you can bring your A-game to the home selling journey. As a result, you can boost the likelihood of enjoying a memorable house selling experience.