There is more to buying your second home than choosing finishes. In fact, a house is most likely the largest investments you’ll make during your lifetime.
If you’re a second-time homebuyer, read on to find out everything you need to know.
The starting line. Should you sell first and then buy? What about vice versa? Selling your current home first makes getting a mortgage easier, but it also brings about the stress of finding somewhere temporary to stay. Buying first will rid this anxiety but will replace it with the difficulty of juggling two monthly house payments until your old home sells. Unfortunately, there is no clear-cut answer. There are, however, ways to make the process go smoother.
Meet with your agent. Meet with a real estate agent early on. An agent will help you understand your home’s true current market value as well as whether the market where you plan to move is more or less competitive than where you live now.
Know your budget. Engage a local mortgage broker or lender to understand what kind of down payment you’ll need, given the price point and type of home you seek to buy. Find out how much equity you have in your current home by going through the loan pre-approval process with a local mortgage professional.
The finish line. The more you know about your finances, the better suited you are to purchase your second home. Identifying and planning the variables involved in buying a house early on will help you make wise choices in your search for a home. Get pre-qualified for a home loan to eliminate any budgeting questions.
When selling your home, consider whether the following improvements will fit into your budget to improve your home’s overall market value.
Windows. A properly installed, high-performance window will retain more heat during the winter and cool air during the summer, lowering energy costs.
Kitchen. Deepening the cabinetry and expanding them upward to the ceiling will provide valuable storage for those who love to cook. Plus, consider new countertops if yours are dated or dingy.
Flooring. Upgrade from carpet to wood or another natural alternative, especially in the home’s high-traffic areas.