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10 tips most first-time homebuyers don’t consider

By Suba Iyer

Published: Friday, June 27 2014 9:25 p.m. MDT

If you are buying a house in a neighborhood full of renters, it only takes a few bad renters or bad landlords to drive the neighborhood down fast. If the neighborhood is full of single people, will you be happy there if you have very young kids?

8. If you like the view, buy it:

Buy the view, not the house. A set of people in our neighborhood are at war with the county for approving a new development next to ours. The reason? There was a wetland and a nice wooded area with a view of snow-peaked mountains from their homes. They bought their homes for that view. Now, within a year of moving in, their view is gone. Unless you own the land between your house and the view, don’t buy a house for the view.

9. Look beyond the staging:

I read about staging while I was researching buying a home, but I never expected the amount of staging a house goes through. The psychology does work; staged houses look far better than houses that are still being occupied. One house we went to had nightstands with lamps on it next to the bed that really increased the appeal of the room. In reality, though, there were no plug points anywhere near the lights. So practically that setup would not have been possible without remodeling. When you are considering a house, mentally try to remove the staging. Pay more attention to the layout of the house and the structure itself. Ugly wallpaper and paint can be easily fixed later.

10. All the old advice about buying your first home is true:

Some examples — have an emergency fund, save for a down payment of 20 percent, get your credit into a better shape and don’t buy more than you can afford. If you need a refresher, here are some good articles: Roadmap for a Successful Relocation, Should You Buy a Home Now?, 11 Tips for First-Time Homebuyers, Renting vs. Buying: The Realities of Home-Ownership, Pay Off Mortgage Early or Invest?

Do you have any tips to offer first-time homebuyers? Are there any specific things to consider in the current housing market?

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