“The house you looked at today and wanted to think about tomorrow may be the same house someone looked at yesterday and will buy today.” ~Koki Adasi
Buying your very own place is the penultimate rite of passage to adulthood–second only to marriage and starting your own family. In fact, purchasing a home has been considered a milestone for many independent individuals, young professionals, and millennials as of late.
In a way, there is a sense of accomplishment in buying your first home amidst current prices in the housing market. But the feeling of pride and achievement in buying a home should not be your only reasons for investing in one.
Admittedly, there are countless reasons to finally own a roof over your head, but there are several tradeoffs as well. Deciding when to buy and why you should buy are both pivotal questions you should ask yourself before taking the plunge.
Knowing when to buy gives you a financial advantage as this ascertains your timing is precise and that you will have gotten the best deal. Having an awareness of why you should buy, however, prevents you from suffering any type of regret long after you have bought your home.
To broaden your perspectives when it comes to shopping for a home, it is crucial that you ask yourself introspective questions that would guide and aid you. These questions will greatly help you know whether you are truly ready to buy a home or not.
1) Am I financially capable of buying a home?
One incredibly important question you should ask yourself is not only whether your finances could handle the purchase of a new home. Instead, you should also ask yourself whether or not you would able to sustain a livable life after you have bought the home.
You may have saved up enough money to pay the initial annual fee, but would otherwise be struggling to pay your other utility and household bills. This is something you should avoid as it would only compound and aggravate your financial situation.
Ideally, you should have at least 30% more than the purchase price to make sure that you do not struggle with another essential spending after investing in a home.
2) How much money do I spend and need to earn each month?
Real estate pundits have proffered this sage advice: Your total monthly housing expenses inclusive of your estimated new mortgage payment should never equal more than 28% of your monthly income.
To have an awareness of whether you can afford a new home and its corresponding mortgage payment, itemize what you are already spending for each month such as bills, groceries, loans, and entertainment.
This will give you a realistic comprehension of how much money you have available for both the purchase and monthly expenses of owning a home.
3) Where should I ideally live?
Everyone has a standards on where they should ideally live. Young professionals and entrepreneurs may want to have their homes near their offices and other important areas. You may have an office located somewhere in Cavite making a house and lot in Trece Martires an appropriate address for you.
But whatever house you are looking to purchase, it is universally understood that where it is located should have the characteristics of a good neighborhood. So make sure you have all the ideal qualities checked off your list before you decide on buying.
4) Are you staying around for a while?
Ideally, if you are looking to secure a residence, then it is best if you would be staying for quite a while (within five years or more). Otherwise, you are better off renting.
The cost alone should be enough to convince you that buying a home is a good investment only if you are staying for the long haul. The costs of securing a loan, closing the sale, moving and other miscellaneous can easily add up to a rather exorbitant amount.
These things require your commitment and effort as well which mostly means the length of your stay should be a determining factor on whether you should purchase or not.
5) Can I see myself living here?
Ultimately, it all boils down to this critical self-inquiry. Once you have surveyed the potential houses and livable spaces you might want to purchase and move into, get a good feel of the place and envision clearly if you can see spending a majority of your time in that home.
Imagine if you can see raising a family and forming memories there. Look around if it is the kind of neighborhood you would want to assimilate yourself into. Start adapting to the place before you even purchase it as it lowers the possibility of buyer’s regret.
Buying your first home can be an invigorating experience, and it gives you a sense of independence like no other. However, before jumping the cliff and finally taking the plunge, ask yourself these important queries first and ascertain whether you are actually ready for a home.
After all, purchasing your first home may be a very rewarding experience, but if you would ultimately regret your decision, then it would be all for naught.