Buyers Stress – How to Prevent It
Buying a house can be stressful for a good number of reasons. Some people find buying a home more stressful than losing a job, going through a divorce or even going bankrupt!
As experienced Real Estate professionals we've worked through the gamut of home buying experiences with our clients and we know what can make buying property more or less stressful. We put a lot of care into preparing our buyers and working closely with them through the many steps involved with buying property. Being as prepared as you can is an important part of preventing home buying stress.
Home-Buying Stresses and Suggested Solutions
Establish what your maximum home price offer and deposit will be.
The first thing you need to establish is the maximum price you can afford to pay for a home. Whether you're buying it outright with available finances or you're going to need a mortgage you need to know what the very bottom line is. It may seem harmless to go see a wide variety of places regardless of whether you can afford them or not, but if you're serious about buying it can actually lead to quicker burnout and stress if you spend too much time looking at unrealistic options, adding to the overall time spent on the process of purchasing.
If you're getting a mortgage, get pre-approved before you begin the home hunting. You'll know from there what your maximum offer can be and where to begin on your detailed home purchase budget.
Detailed Home Purchase Budgeting Plan
One of the big stresses about buying a home is that there are many hidden little costs that pop up as the purchase comes to its close. Here in BC, Canada those expenses can include:
- Property Transfer Tax
- Legal Fees
- Property Tax Balance
- Utility Balances
- Mortgage Insurance
- Home Inspection
- Strata Moving Fees
Knowing what your maximum home purchase price is, your deposit can be, and what most of the foreseeable expenses should average out to be will help you minimize a great deal of stress when you're ready to buy your home.
Choose to Work With a Knowledgeable Realtor Who Puts You At Ease
When buying a home one of the key parts of how stressful or not the process will be is your relationship with your realtor. Having a knowledgable expert who is on your side is of immense value when the crunch is on and the deal is closing. Your agent should be able to help you figure out if you're missing anything in your Home Purchase Budgeting Plan, and then work with you to find the most suitable options you can afford and be happy with. Ask your realtor what they see people frequently getting stressed about when buying a home and how you can avoid the same.
Houses, Choices, and Considerations
When you view homes, consider and note what improvements if any you would want to do, and put realistic estimates together on what those improvements would cost. Add these figures to your home purchase budget.
Some of your budget details may change according to various homes you look at, for instance insurance can cost much more in some rural areas where there aren't fire hydrants within a short distance of every home. Ask your realtor about the hidden costs particularly associated with any homes you are most interested in.
In a seller's market make your best offer first, to avoid losing out repeatedly in bidding wars. More on Buying in a Sellers Market HERE
While Making Offers/Waiting to Close
Studies have shown that buying property can be as or more stressful than losing a job, going through a divorce, planning a wedding and even going bankrupt! If you planned for the hidden costs then by the time you're ready to make an offer and go through the process of closing you'll already have avoided a great deal of the stress associated with buying a home. Various new stresses can come up during this phase, examples include:
- slow and busy lawyers and notaries
- combative sellers
- poor inspection results
- unexpected hitches in financing
It's not within the scope of this article to break down what to do in each of those sample instances, at that point we strongly hope you are working with a good real estate agent who is helping you through those difficulties. But one thing that is the common source of stress at closing time is the WAITING...will everything come together, or will something fall through?
The best way to avoid stress during all the waiting that can happen towards the end of a home purchase is to take care of yourself. Surely this could sound trite and obvious, but when we're under stress sometimes we don't take very good care of our health, our sleep, our families, our friends. It can be such an overwhelming process but we can tell you that it is much easier when you're feeling strong and steady.
While you're waiting for the sale to close make sure to drink water, visit with your friends and try not to obsess about the purchase, get lots of sleep, and get some exercise. Spend some time diving into a source of distracting happiness, perhaps for you it's knitting or golfing or playing music or reading good books; do whatever quality activities you can to distract yourself from worrying about the home purchase while waiting for other parties to wrap up their parts.