Some say that getting married and moving are two of the most stressful events in life. Real estate agents are in the unique position of being a key component in at least one of these events, and quite possibly both, as many folks opt to purchase a home when they decide to wed.
If you are looking to purchase a home within a year of getting married, here are some tips:
- Be sure the location you choose works for both you and your spouse. Both of you will need to ensure that your new home is within a reasonable commuting distance from work, friends and family.
- Discuss upfront what features you each can and cannot live without. You would be surprised how many couples differ on what amenities are absolutely necessary. This can make finding a suitable home impossible. It is important to agree on, up front, what is really important to each of you. Start by making a list. Do you need four bedrooms, or are three bedrooms enough? What about a pool? Is it necessary or do you not want one at all? Can you live without central air conditioning and have it installed later or must your home have it? All of these questions should be decided before you go house hunting, or you both will be setting yourselves up for arguments and wasted time.
- Is there a style of home that is simply a "no go" for one of you? Maybe you grew up in a ranch and vowed you would have more than one floor when it came time to buy your own home. Maybe your spouse has always dreamed of renovating a Victorian. It's best to have these discussions before you start looking as you'll better be able to narrow down the selections.
- Know how much you can afford. Yes, it's great that your combined income may afford you more home than you could take on alone, however, be sure to account for things such as homeowner's insurance, maintenance, (Which is on average about 10 percent of the values of the home. For instance, a $300,000 home would require about $3,000 worth of yearly maintenance, depending on the age of the home.) and taxes.
- Find someone to help that knows the area. It's great to do your research online, but only an experienced real estate agent is going to know the specific nuances of the town and area where you want to buy a home. Their experience will bring you the knowledge that will save you time, money and aggravation in the future.