Before the pandemic started, buying a house was already a long and time-consuming process. There were too many things to consider since you would spend a lot of money on it, and it would have an impact on your daily lives. It could be scary if you were buying your first one. Then there is the pandemic, which is causing the market to spiral down, and you also have to take that into account. So here are the five things you should consider if you’re buying your first house during the pandemic.
If you are a first-time buyer, getting homeowners’ insurance is a must. Legally, you can choose not to get one, but it will be safer if you do. Basically, this type of insurance will protect you and your belongings when something bad occurs. Some things are just out of our control, such as natural disasters or theft. Let’s be realistic; these are inevitable. But we can prepare if such things happen.
This insurance may help you with losses and repair damages to your home or belongings. You don’t want to bear all the expenses, do you? And if you are loaning your house, most creditors require this insurance. As with all other insurances, the cost may vary differently. It would be best to consult and get a comparison quote from multiple companies before investing in one, so you can have an idea of what would work best for you.
Do your research beforehand
According to your lifestyle, you may want to consider your neighborhood and how accessible some establishments would be. A good example is if you are greatly concerned about your health and fitness. You may want to find a home near establishments that encourage physical activity like the gym for easier access. Working from home is a new normal, and if you are doing so, you may want to find a peaceful and quiet neighborhood so you can concentrate more. Or, if you are a medical worker and a front liner, is your new home going to be near your workplace? For entrepreneurs, you may also want to consider if there is a possibility that your neighbors will do business with you.
Since we’re facing a health crisis, you may also want to look for locations that have fewer cases, especially if you have young children or seniors in your household. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, older adults have a higher risk and may experience more complications if they contract the virus. So do your research thoroughly.
Go along with the home inspection if you can
This one is also crucial. It’s important that you see your soon-to-be home and raise any concerns that you may have. Even if your home inspector is going to write and report their findings to you, it can still be easier if there’s open and actual communication. Your inspector should also be able to explain some of their findings easily if you’re present and answer any of your questions. It’s also important to go along so you can explore and know your way around the property. You will be able to observe more closely the details that matter most to you.
Home inspectors are trained experts, but they can also make mistakes–or overlook them. Some home inspection companies may have some restrictions due to the pandemic, and it’s possible that you may have to tour your house virtually, but it’s always good to provide an extra pair of eyes. Effective communication between you and your inspector is also a key to a successful home buying.
Expect other difficulties and challenges
Because of the COVID-19, health and safety protocols have been implemented. According to recent housing data by Redfin, homebuyers’ traffic decreased since the start of the pandemic. But it doesn’t mean you have zero competition in bidding. Along with that, you may also have fewer options in today’s market, but there are still excellent homes out there if you know where to look.
Whether you are financing your house through FHA loans or conventional ones, you may be required to have a higher credit score and be prepared for a higher down payment. Since most people are now working from home, the transaction and other processes may take longer than usual, so you have to be patient. Nevertheless, be hopeful that you can still get through with it and finally get your dream house.
In times of uncertainties, making improvements in our lives is still important. Buying your dream house during a pandemic is definitely challenging and scary, but it doesn’t mean that you have to go through it alone.