Adulting isn’t easy. But when you hit your late 20s it gets even harder — especially when you decide that it’s time to buy your first home. There are certain factors that first-time home buyers need to consider when they embark on this journey. We’ve done some of the legwork for you, outlining what you need to keep in mind when making one of the most important purchases of your life.
Know what you need in a home
What mattered to you in your early 20s when you were seeking out your first apartment to rent, may not be the same when you are looking to buy your first home. That’s why it’s key to make a list of your requirements when beginning your research to find the house of your dreams. Not only do you need to know how much home you can afford, you also need to consider your must-haves. Do you love cooking, perhaps you’d rather go for a gourmet kitchen than more square footage? Or, if you like entertaining, perhaps having outdoor space is important. Whatever your requirements are, make a list and know your deal breakers. You also want to assess what you are willing to compromise on, and especially have a hard line about your budget.
It’s going to take time
The home buying process is tedious and time-consuming, and it’s not going to happen overnight. Documents, documents, and more documents will be needed for the deal and the more organized you are with financial statements, the better off you’ll be in the long run.
Hire a professional
Your best tool in landing the home of your dreams will be to hire a real estate agent — No, you don’t want to skimp on this important step of the home buying process. An agent will work with you to find properties within your budget and provide a realistic picture of how much home you can get within your budget. While you can do your own research to seek out properties in your preferred neighborhood and within your ideal price range, your agent is likely to show you listings that you’d otherwise overlook.
It’s not going to change your life
Having a place to call home can create a greater sense of stability and give you the opportunity to create a space that is truly your own, but it’s unlikely to change your life dramatically — unless you’ve been living with five housemates and one bathroom. Don’t put too much stress or weight on finding the perfect home, because in the end, a home is what you make it.
You might be surprised by who steps in to help
When it comes to buying a home — like other major life events such as getting married, having a child, or experiencing an illness — you might be surprised by who steps in to help, and who doesn’t. The home buying process might reveal who your true friends are, and you need to be ready to see that some people will be right there with you when the stress of purchasing a home becomes overwhelming, while others may shy away.
Buying a home in your late 20s is definitely possible, especially if you keep in mind what you will be facing as you work to make your dream a reality.