7 crucial tips for first-time buyers
If record-low mortgage rates and plummeting housing values have you primed to get into the market, don't get antsy — get educated. Here are some essential steps to take when buying your first home.
- Pay attention to how a home smells. A strong odor — especially a musty one — can be an indication of a bigger problem such as mold.
- Look at small details, not just the big picture. If there are cobwebs in the corners, dirty windows, weeds in the lawn and leaves in the gutters, the sellers obviously didn't do a good job of keeping the property clean. If they haven't taken the time and money to maintain the little things, there's a chance they've let big things, such as plumbing or the heating and cooling system, fall into disrepair.
- Don't think just because the house needs a few minor repairs or new paint on the walls, it will be cheap, quick and easy to tackle. Before you know it, the costs add up, it's taken a lot more time than expected and you've had to call in the experts to finish the jobs you couldn't handle on your own.