first home

Choices to Consider When Buying a Dream Home or Starter Home

Mortgage rates may have inched up recently, but it’s not too late to think about buying your first home. To avoid regrets, consider these tips to help you decide whether you’re ready to take the plunge and buy a forever home or simply test the waters with a starter home.

Location and Price

Usually the first consideration when house hunting is finding the area where you want to live with amenities that are important to you. Dublin, Ohio, is one of the finest suburban communities outside Columbus and a great place to live whether you’re single or married with children.

Most communities have homes in various price ranges. You’ll need to crunch the numbers to see what you can afford. Starter homes come in all packages: condos, townhouses, single-family homes, brand new, sold as is, or something in between. A less expensive home can help you save money for a forever home. The median price for homes in Dublin is $377,500. The Ohio Housing Finance Agency offers down payment assistance and financing resources.

Additional expenses can erode your budget. Smaller homes typically have lower property taxes and lower homeowner’s insurance premiums. Homeowner’s insurance in Ohio costs an average of $1,608 a year. Certain damages to the dwelling and other structures, injuries occurring on your property, and theft are usually covered by the policy. If you’re concerned about appliances, HVAC, plumbing, and electrical systems breaking down, inquire about home appliance warranty from a trusted brand.

Other House-Hunting Considerations

After you decide on community and budget options, you’ll need to consider a few more things before looking at homes. These additional tips can help you decide whether you want a small house to build your homeowner knowledge base or whether you’re ready to settle down in a larger home with all its responsibilities right from the start.

  • Commute. Distance from daily and weekly events can change if your family grows. Consider how traffic affects your travel time and commuting costs for work, child care, school, church, and shopping.
  • Duration. Do you want to live there for 5 years or 25 years? Have an exit strategy in case you need to sell quickly. Moving causes upheaval for some people. Finding another home while selling your current home and keeping it tidy for showings can be stressful. Others feel it’s a chance to declutter and get a fresh start. Either way, it costs money.
  • Size. Larger homes are more expensive, and you need to heat, clean, and repair that extra space. However, it gives you room to grow your family, should you choose. A smaller home is a great way to try out home ownership and all that comes with it. Yard work, snow removal, repairs, and furnishings are all part of the continual upkeep of a home. And you can consider using it as a rental if you outgrow it.
  • Condition. If repairs are needed, are they costly? Or can you make them yourself? If repairs are not made, what are your resale options?

The Takeaway

Buying a starter home or forever home is an exciting but stressful life event. Having a knowledgeable associate from The Alfriend Group walk alongside you can reduce your stress by helping you buy and sell in Dublin, Ohio.

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