7 Common Home Buying Mistakes You Must Avoid

Buying a home is an exciting purchase! It is also one of the largest and most important decisions you will make. It's important to make sure you avoid the following pitfalls: 

1. Not getting pre-approved. It's important to involve a lender early on and get pre-approved. This ensures that we are viewing homes that are within your budget. There's nothing worse than falling in love with a home, then finding out that the bank won't loan you the money for your purchase. It also helps to streamline the purchase process - your offer on a potential home will be much stronger if you are pre-approved. 

2. Not working with a real estate agent. From showings and communication, to making an offer, removing subjects, then closing on a home, an experienced agent will be able to guide you through the purchase process and make sure your interests are well protected. Read reviews and ask around when finding an agent, you'll want someone in your corner working for you!

P.S. as a Buyer, you typically won't be paying a commission - it's usual for the Seller to pay the commissions. 

3. Waiving the home inspection. It can seem like a large expense up front, and if the home looks good, what's the point? The point is that a home inspection is meant to help find issues that may not be obvious like mould (common in our area), structural issues, or leaks that could potentially cost you a lot of money. Think of the home inspection as an investment - if you proceed with the purchase, you're going in understanding the condition of the home and if you don't proceed with the purchase, you've saved yourself thousands of dollars in the long run. 

4. Not researching the area. Falling in love with a home is great, but it's also important to love the area. Make sure you consider factors such as school districts, potential future development, undesirable neighbourhoods, and proximity to amenities. If you're unsure about the area, do a couple drive bys (especially in the evening) and explore the neighbourhood - you'll get to see what goes on and get a good feel for the area. 

5. Not negotiating. You may not know that you can negotiate more than just the price of the home. You can also negotiate things like the closing date, terms and conditions in the contract, and repairs. An experienced realtor can guide you through negotiations and make sure you get the best value for the purchase price.  

6. Not thinking about the resale value. Unless you plan to stay in the home long term (even then, life happens and plans change), most people move within 6-10 years so it's important to consider resale. Factors such as condition, location, size, and features can impact the home's resale value. If you're handy, you may even consider a fixer-upper, which is a great way to increase the resale value. 

7. Not understanding the long-term costs. You bought the house, now what? In addition to your mortgage payment, you'll want to budget for property taxes, home insurance, utility payments, and maintenance, which can add up. Ask around to help prepare for these future costs. 

The purchase process can be overwhelming and stressful, but with preparation and the right agent on your side, the process is exciting and enjoyable!

Searching for your dream home? I'd love to help make your dream a reality! 


Spring Tips for Home Maintenance

As the weather starts to warm up, it's time to start thinking about Spring cleaning and home maintenance! Here are some tips to give your home a little TLC and to keep your home in tip top shape: 

  • Clean gutters and downspouts to prevent water damage from a build up of debris. This is an important task that shouldn't be overlooked. 

  • Check the roof for any damage that may have occurred over the winter and have it repaired. This will help maximize the expected life of your roof and prevent potential damage that could occur if left unattended. 

  • Check your HVAC system and have it serviced. After working hard all winter, it's a good idea to have a professional make sure the system is still running property. They can also change the filters and do any necessary cleaning for you. 
  • Inspect the plumbing under sinks, around toilets, and in the basement or crawlspace for any leaks or signs of moisture. Water damage can become costly if it's not repaired. 

  • Clean and seal your decks and patios to extend the lifespan (and for maximum enjoyment for the upcoming patio season!)

  • Clean the windows and doors, and powerwash the exterior of your home. You'll have your home looking fresh in no time. 

  • Do some spring gardening to get your yard in shape for the summer. Rake debris, plant new flowers, mow the lawn, and add new mulch. Your home will have great curb appeal. 

Spring maitenance helps to keep your home in good condition, looking amazing, and can add value in the future! Maintaining the systems in your home can also prevent costly repairs down the road.

Do you need recommendations for professionals to do the maintenance for you? I have some great connections that I'd be happy to share. Just reach out!

As a bonus tip, regularly check your attic for discolouration. Discolouration and mould are very common in the Comox Valley, but can be prevented and are easily treatable if caught early. It's worth the extra effort to avoid future issues!

MLS® property information is provided under copyright© by the Vancouver Island Real Estate Board and Victoria Real Estate Board. The information is from sources deemed reliable, but should not be relied upon without independent verification.