So, you think you want to buy a home. Have you thought about why you want to buy a home? Is it a dream of yours? Have you thought about the pros and cons of owning your own home? Does ownership even suit you? Ownership does have its advantages, but you must make sure you can afford it along the way.

Couple things to consider…

Ownership can also seem or become overwhelming, too and may even feel like it can tie you down. First question you should ask yourself is if you are ready to settle down; particularly with career decisions. Are you in a career where advancement might make you have to move? Or perhaps you work with a company that typically has turnover throughout the year. Both these examples could lead to complications down the road.

The second thing to consider is the added responsibilities with owning a home. The days of having your landlord shovel the sidewalks or mow the lawn are over. When things in the house break, perhaps the toilet or the water heater you are now responsible for getting them taken care of. Of course, there are also some amenities rentals and apartments may offer that you will no longer have access too.

Now a couple other things to consider…

Ownership isn’t all drab though. There are many perks to consider, too. Having the ability to customize your home to anything you desire is a big plus. In most cases, your home will be considerable in size versus what you may have been living in previously. This will allow you to have more space to grow into your home as the years go by. Depending on how big the property is you may have the ability to add-on to your home such as a bigger garage or maybe a room or two above it. Doing such projects will most definitely add value to your home along the way.

So… are you ready?

Okay, so you think you’re ready to make the leap… great. Let’s consider whether you can afford it. The money needed to buy a home in the beginning can be incredible. Hopefully you are or have been saving some money for awhile and have a nice stack of cash just waiting to be used. However, if you are not here are some things to think about.

Down payment, closing costs and insurance are the three big things to first consider when shopping for a loan to purchase a home. Depending on what type of financing you choose will determine the down payment needed. Most lenders require 20% down however you may qualify for special programs that offer as little as 0% down. Other special programs may have incentives on closing costs and/or incidentals. Closing costs may range anywhere from 2 to 8% of the purchase price and depending on how much you put down for a down payment, you may have to have private mortgage insurance. PMI insures the lender – not you – against your default on the loan. Without the guarantee from carrying the PMI, the lender would not make the loan. Homeowner insurance is a must as it protects you from the likes of fire, tornadoes, floods, etc… Each policy is different and typically customizable.

Other financial advantages…

Now I know that what is mentioned above is probably a lot to take in. But owning a home isn’t all about tedious tasks, responsibilities and paying the MAN. Owning a home offers financial benefits for yourself, too. One, for example, is a tax break. You now have the ability to deduct mortgage interest from your federal tax returns. A little more change back at the end of year puts a smile on anyone’s face! Also, as each month and year goes by, you are growing more equity in your home. Equity is the value of your home that can be converted to cash in a sale. Consider this, a home is a good investment and if you maintain your home and add other unique facets to it along the way with inclusion of time your home will increase in value. This translates to more money in your pocket.

In conclusion…

Buying a house is a big decision full of twists and turns. Enjoy it though because there is something special about going through the process. Don’t let the big idea deter you from your goal of purchasing that home you always wanted. Take little steps and make sure you understand the process. It never hurts to ask questions. Make sure you understand what you’re getting yourself into!