Home Court Series Part I – First Time Home-Buying Mistakes and How to Avoid Them

March 3, 2020 by Chevron Federal Credit Union

Having the home court advantage can mean the difference between hanging a banner in the rafters and hanging your jersey in the lockers. The Home Court Series will give you that advantage with your home buying experience. From mistakes and how to avoid them when buying your first house to covering mortgages and refinancing, this four part series will help guide you through some of the most important aspects of owning a home.

Part I of the Home Court Series introduces three common mistakes first time home-buyers come across and two pointers on how to avoid them. 

Rookie Mistake #1: Looking for a home before you are pre-approved for a mortgage.

Two Pointers:

  1. A pre-approval lets you know how much house you can afford.
  2. Knowing your price range lets you avoid the heartache of falling in love with a home that is financially out of reach.

Rookie Mistake #2: Not considering how long you will stay in the home.

Two Pointers:

  1. If you plan on moving within a few years or are buying the home with the idea of selling it relatively quickly, you may be able to save money with an Adjustable-Rate Mortgage (ARM).
  2. If you plan to stay in your home for a long time, you may be better off with a fixed-rate loan, especially in today’s low-rate climate.

Rookie Mistake #3: Not planning for all of the expenses of home-ownership.

Two Pointers:

  1. Don’t forget to budget for property taxes, home insurance, HOA fees (if you have them), and unexpected repairs.
  2. If you did not put 20% down, you will also have Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI) added to your payment by your lender.

The rookie life can be daunting, especially when buying a house, but knowing these three common mistakes and how to avoid them will help you prepare to purchase your first home and set you up for success. When you’re ready, check out our First Time Homebuyers Program.

For more information on the Home Court Series, please check out the rest of the posts here:

BALANCE is an amazing resource for all our members to utilize when taking on life's milestones. With trusted guidance available for free, they are ready to help everyone on the path to financial wellness. This article and many more can be found on their website: balancepro.org.


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