5 Practical Tips for Newly Weds When Buying Your First Home



Photography provided by Cutler Real Estate

The first few years of marriage can be challenging. For newlyweds, there are some decisions that add stress to their relationship. Buying a home, for the first time as a married couple, is one of those situations. Yet, that stress can be dramatically reduced if the new couple understands a few things about the process.

Holly Maloney, a managing partner at Cutler Real Estate, has worked in real estate since 2004. She has a passion to help her cli- ents buy the right home at the right price. She offers some helpful information to consider when purchasing a home, especially to peo- ple who are recently married

Make it easy. Hire a realtor. It doesn’t cost you anything.

This might seem obvious, but Maloney says many couples try to undertake the complicated process of buying a home without the help of an expert. A Realtor, however, knows the stock of homes in a given area and the ins and outs of the process and can help the couple spend less time and energy looking at homes that don’t fit their needs or budget.

“The seller pays the commission,” Maloney says. There is no charge for the buyers to use a Realtor; instead the Realtor can make the process less expensive and more satisfying. “Buying a house should be a business decision, not an emotional one,” Maloney says. This is especially true for newlyweds, and Maloney believes she can help young couples make a solid decision when buying their first home.

Find a good loan officer right away.

Maloney says, “A loan officer will provide a range of approval,” referring to how much money a couple can borrow based on their income. She warns, however, “Approval does not mean you have to use it all.” Many people see the high end of the loan range and dream of homes that, when other factors are considered, are too expensive for them.“They have to be comfortable paying the mortgage,” Maloney says. A good loan officer will help a new couple understand their true bor- rowing parameters."

 

Look at the expenses that will go into the house.

How much does it cost for insurance and utilities? What repairs are needed? These are questions that help determine the couple’s actual buying power. “You don’t want to be house poor,” Maloney tells her clients. One way to prevent that is to make a budget, which includes the immediate expenses of owning a particular house. Maloney emphasizes paying close attention to the “big ticket items,” including the roof, furnace and windows, among others. If one or more of these projects need attention before or shortly after moving in, the buyer should consider making a lower bid or looking for a different house.

Make a list of 10 things you want in a house.

Maloney encourages her clients to create a “wish list” for their home: finished basement, new kitchen or bathroom, great yard, pool, etc. Once she has this list, Maloney can identify potential homes.

 

Look at the expenses that will go into the house.

How much does it cost for insurance and utilities? What repairs are needed? These are questions that help determine the couple’s actual buying power. “You don’t want to be house poor,” Maloney tells her clients. One way to prevent that is to make a budget, which includes the immediate expenses of owning a particular house. Maloney emphasizes paying close attention to the “big ticket items,” including the roof, furnace and windows, among others. If one or more of these projects need attention before or shortly after moving in, the buyer should consider making a lower bid or looking for a different house.

 

Trust your expert agent

“A great real estate agent needs to be an educator, not a salesperson,” Maloney says. People looking for a home, especially newlyweds, should be satisfied and fulfilled with their purchase, not burdened and overwhelmed. An experienced agent knows that trust is the most crucial factor when establishing a relationship with her clients. Maloney says, “I wouldn’t sell you a house I wouldn’t sell to my children.”

 

Cutler Real Estate is located at 6460 Harrison Ave., Suite 100, Cincinnati, OH 45247. You can reach Holly Maloney by phone at 513.607.1986, by email at hmaloney@cutlerhomes.com or visit her website at hollymaloneysells.com.