Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Do's and Don'ts for First-time Homebuyers on Chicago's North Shore

When December rolls around, many North Shore residents begin thinking about the new year and what it will have in store. For instance, are you starting a new job? Will you move to a new home or community? Of course, these are all important milestones, but if buying a home for the first time is on your list of new year to do's, it's time to start planning ahead!

First-time homebuyer mistakes are quite common, but can easily be avoided with a bit of early research and preparation. Consider the following your Guidebook to Do's and Don't of Buying a Home on the North Shore:

Do— Work with a real estate agent
There are many complex decisions and negotiating with different parties involved with buying a home and if you haven't done so before, it can feel overwhelming. The right real estate agent can be invaluable to you as you navigate this journey, helping with everything from finding the best home to recommending a lender to explaining closing costs.

Do— Think long term about your home
As you tour homes on the North Shore, keep the long term in mind. The school districts or proximity to parks may not be important to you if you don't have children, but the number of bedrooms will affect your resale value. Think about how easily you could sell the home if you needed to move or how changing the home to suit your needs might affect resale.

Don't— Make a decision based on emotions
Buying a home is a big step for a North Shore resident or those relocating to the area, but it is one that should be made with a clear mind. Don't allow yourself to form emotional attachments to a property or its details prior to the purchase as this could keep you from making a smart financial decision.

Don't— Overlook the cost of improvements
As I mentioned above, it's always wise to keep resale in mind when you purchase a home. You'll also want to factor in the costs of making the home suit your needs or style— home improvement projects, for example. Buying a fixer upper home could likely cost more and take longer to finish than expected, so be sure you have the budget before you make the purchase.

As your real estate expert in Winnetka, Deerfield, Highland Park, Glencoe, Northbrook and the surrounding communities, I'm here to help with your first home purchase! Give me a call today with any questions you might have about the real estate market for the coming year!

Janie Bress
Your North Shore Real Estate Expert

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