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Purchasing a New Home for the First Time

Purchasing a new home is a very different process than purchasing a previously owned home. When you are the first owner of the home, there are many considerations you have to make that used homebuyers don't have to make. For instance, you will need to decide what flooring you want, what color the walls should be, and even what color the outlet and light switch covers should be. These choices can seem overwhelming, so here are a few tips to help you tackle the process.

Start with Getting Financing
Before you even begin looking for a home plan, lot, or house, make sure you have your financing in place. While you do not necessarily have to have your loan in hand, pre-approval will help you know how much you can afford. Take a careful look at your budget to determine how much you can afford to pay each month for you home. Be sure to factor your homeowner's insurance and tax bill into that monthly payment amount.

Consider the Location
When it comes to real estate, location is key. You want to buy a new house in a desirable location, as this will make the resale value increase over time. Avoid living in dangerous or run down areas. Usually this is not a problem when you are shopping for a new construction, but do consider location as you shop. Also, consider the intangibles about the home's location. For instance, a home that backs up to a busy road or interstate will be harder to sell because the noise from the street detracts from the home's appeal.

Choose the Builder and Developer First
Since you are shopping for a newly built home, avoid the temptation to shop based on the home itself. You will not have to worry about ugly wall coverings or carpets. Instead, choose a builder or developer first. Find out which builders have a reputation for well-made homes that they stand behind. Avoid those developers that have a reputation for throwing up a home quickly and shoddily.

How can you find out about a builder's reputation? Talk to people you know who are in the real estate or construction fields. They will be able to tell you which builders to trust, and which to avoid.

Once you have chosen a developer, you can shop for your home among that developer's subdivisions and floor plans. You will be reassured that your home will be built well, and you will also have the assurance that the value will increase over time, because the developer's reputation will stay with the home as long as you own it.

Don't Forget the Inspection
Most used homebuyers would not buy without having the home inspected. This is important in a new construction too. You want to have an experienced inspector look at the overall construction of the home. This can be done even before the home is completely finished, as this gives the inspector the chance to see the quality of the building methods and materials.

Avoid Too Many Add Ons
As you prepare to purchase your home, you will have a lot of decisions to make. The beauty of buying a new home is that you can choose the carpet color, paint color, and even the color of your cabinetry. However, you will be offered a variety of upgrades to your home. For instance, you may be offered an upgrade to a more expensive countertop or a Jacuzzi tub in the bathroom. This is where the builder stands to make a lot of money off of your sale.

As you make the decisions about the home, make sure the essentials are covered. However, avoid things that are going to be costly upgrades. This can increase the cost of your new home substantially, and you can always make changes later after you have finished the purchase. If you do want an upgrade, do not be afraid to negotiate, and do your research to make sure the price is fair. In the end you will have a new home with fresh paint and brand new flooring no matter what you choose, so make sure you are not paying too much for extras you can add later.


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