3 Things to Look for When Buying Your First Home

Written by: Regina Thomas

Despite the health issues of 2020, the Canadian housing market remained a powerhouse. As of the third quarter of that year, 67 percent of Canadians owned their own homes. That’s almost three percent better than the same time in 2019.

This means there are properties to be sold and bought, and you might be one of the latter. However, this doesn’t mean you should pick the first home you like. Doing so can be detrimental to your family and your finances.

While it’s not a science, the way to find the right home involves a process. This is especially true when it’s your first one. You want that property to be right so it doesn’t taint your feelings of homeownership in the future.

To help you out, here are 3 things to look for when buying your first home.

1. Floor plans

You want your initial house to be comfortable and efficient. The rooms should flow smoothly into the home’s dimensions. There shouldn’t be any space too big or small in the environment.

The way to know more about this is to examine floor plans. When it comes to older homes, you can discover this information at online sales sites. For newer properties, like those from Sterling Homes, you’d find floor plans on their website.

Once you find an appealing plan the next step is to examine a sample home. For instance, you would visit showhomes in Edmonton to get a feel for each one in that city. Eventually, you’d find one to fit your family’s needs.

2. Neighborhoods

A home is more than a simple shelter. In many cases, it’s part of a larger system that forms a neighborhood. If you find a home in the wrong neighborhood it could result in issues for your entire family.

Thus, when you consider buying a home for the first time you also need to consider the neighborhood it’s in. You must examine all of the facets to see if it’s a match. For instance, discover more information about safety in and around the neighborhood. Look at the area’s schools to see if they’ll be what your children need.

Visit the businesses that surround the neighborhood. If they provide the necessities and more, then it’s a good place. If it takes a while to get to shopping or entertainment, it might not be the place for you.

Another item to examine is traffic. Determine the commute between the house and your job. While the home might be within your price range, the mental and financial costs of the drive could eliminate the return on investment.

3. First-Time Buyer Programs

One of the goals of local and national governments is to make homeowners of its citizens. To do this, they encourage families to purchase their first house through various incentives. In turn, they feel comfortable in making a huge investment.

They make this happen through loan incentives. For instance, first-time buyers might receive a lower interest rate on their mortgage. Another incentive commonly utilized is the reduction of a down payment to almost nothing.

Don’t take these first-time buyer programs for granted. Use them now so your return on investment is greater. As a result, you’ll be able to quickly pay down your home loan. Then, when you’re ready to buy a new house, you’ll not only have the funds available but you’ll also make a profit on your previous property.

Being a first-time home buyer causes a mix of excitement and panic. It’s a major investment in your family’s life. Therefore, take its purchase seriously as well.

Make sure you do the necessary research before you look for a home or call an agent. Have your financials in order and get a loan pre-approval so you know your price range. When you have that in hand, your family can look at various floor plans to see which one best fits their needs.

Don’t say yes to the first home you see. Do some shopping and see for yourself what the neighborhoods are like. Make your offer when you’re satisfied everything looks good.

Finally, enjoy the first home you buy. Not everyone can afford this achievement, so take a moment to be thankful for what you have received.

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