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What to expect when buying a home in Washington DC

A cozy traditional home in Washington DC.

Buying a home in Washington, DC? Be prepared for an exciting experience, but always remember that with a large amount at stake, it’s important to go about the process with your eyes wide open. To help you keep your focus, learn about the things you can expect along the way. Here are four of them:

  1. You may have to deal with unforeseen costs
  2. There’s a plethora of reasons you might end up spending more than you budgeted for. As things may not always go as planned, it’s a good idea to set aside funds for unforeseen costs.

    One big sudden expense is when you find you still have to pay for your old home at the same time you start paying for your new one. If you’re renting and your lease expires before you can buy or move to your new home, you might need to spend on temporary accommodation. Consider, as well, the costs of moving and perhaps doing some minor repairs when you move to your new home.

    While shopping around for a home, it’s best to plan for the worst case scenario and set aside some contingency fund to help you tide over these unforeseen turn of events.

  3. You’ll have several mortgage options
  4. When looking for a mortgage lender, don’t just go for the first one you find without exploring other options. Even an interest rate that’s only 0.5% lower can save you a lot of money in the long run. Compare different offers closely and don’t forget to read the fine print where you just might uncover hidden charges. Shop for a lender as you would shop for a home – review and compare their rates, terms, and fees, and look for details you can negotiate on.

  5. A home inspection will likely uncover something
  6. Whether it is a small fix or a major deal breaker, a home inspector is likely to find problems with a property. This is a good thing for you as the buyer because it means avoiding surprise repair and maintenance costs when you’ve already moved in.

    When these problems are revealed, find out how much they will cost to repair. Do not just accept any offer from the seller as the actual cost may turn out higher. If you can’t agree on the repair costs, consider if you’re willing to shoulder the difference or if you have to give up on the property.

  7. It’s alright to ask questions
  8. Do not be afraid to ask questions if you find something you don’t understand or think is out of order. Real estate can be a tricky business, and asking questions could mean the difference between landing the perfect home and ending up with the wrong one. Your real estate agent will be more than happy to address your concerns, and will help you feel confident about your decisions. While your Realtor can most likely answer all your questions, it’s also a good idea to ask the sellers themselves when you get the chance.

Buying a home can be highly nuanced and confusing. Work with an experienced DC Realtor who can make the process easier for you and help you avoid unpleasant surprises. Get in touch with Heller Coley Reed today at 240.800.5155 or send them an email at HellerColeyReed(at)Gmail(dotted)com