After spending a few years in renting your home, you realize that you need to stop throwing away money every month on rent and spend it as EMI instead, on a home that you would own at the end of the day. Once you have reached that critical decision, the exciting part starts – finding a suitable home! Going home-hunting can be educational as you get to learn about so many aspects that you never knew as a renter.
And after you have found the home that seems to be the perfect one, you want to jump in and make the payment. However, this is also the point where you need to be prudent and check out all aspects of the home and its neighbourhood as well as the builder, etc; this is because there are many fraudsters out there waiting to dupe the trusting ones. To counter that, you need to follow a few basic guidelines towards making the right choice, including the following:
Check out the neighbourhood
Is it a safe location where your kids can walk safely on the roads? What’s the crime rate like there? Are there any factories in the nearby areas spouting pollution? Are there any clubs or bars in the neighbourhood? Don’t be scared to walk away from the home if the neighbourhood isn’t safe. If necessary, stalk the neighbourhood at different times of the day to get a better idea of what is happening around.
Check for nearby bus stops, rail connections and shops for daily groceries within walking distance….or gyms or even medical stores for emergencies that typically arise at an awkward hour. See if there are good schools or colleges in the nearby areas. All these factors will also influence the resale of your property in case there is ever a need to dispose of it.
Test your commute
Check how far your workplace is from the home and also whether there are any traffic jams that you would be encountering daily- this could have a big impact on your daily life.
Don’t go by what the brochure says as some of the information isn’t true. Check that all amenities mentioned exist on the ground. You will also need to confirm the actual carpet area of the home as many builders tend to include common areas like elevators and staircases too – especially when buying an apartment. Check whether the fittings conform to what’s been promised on paper.
Hire a professional
Instead of being penny-wise and pound-foolish, hire a property lawyer who will know what all the small underwriting on the contract means and can handle all the details on negotiations, taxes and ownership changes, etc, to ensure there are no loopholes left behind.
Your monthly bills will not only include your EMIs, but also include home-owners association dues that cover the use of common amenities, home owner’s insurance, etc, so ask for specifics.
Carefully consider what you can afford when taking a home loan; don’t base it on how much loan you can take, but rather, on how much loan you can repay. Also, you will need to shop around different banks to see which one offers the lowest interest rates.
Buying a property is a lot of work, do your homework carefully and you will reap the benefits joyously!