The decision to buy a new home brings with it a roller coaster of emotions, a euphoric feeling. It wasn’t any different for Arun and Seema Roy. Four years back, the couple had made a hefty advance for their first home in an under-construction project in the southern part of Kolkata. Everything was fine, as it should be until they realised the mistake they made by not verifying the track-record of the developer.
It’s been two years past the completion date of the apartment, but the construction of the building is still not over. The couple is planning to move to the court to recover the advance paid. A lifetime experience that was supposed to fill their lives with joy has turned into an unnecessary headache.
Not checking the credibility of the developer is one of the gravest home buying mistakes that buyers can make. This can pose a range of issues — the project may be stuck in the construction phase or expectations of quality and timely delivery are not met. Unfortunately, there’s nothing much you can do to reverse the damage besides taking the legal route in such situations.
However, there are steps that can be taken to minimize these probabilities. Checking the developer’s credibility may include – checking the “delivery time” track record for the past projects of the developer, interacting with the residents of the delivered projects can also provide important insights.
Other serious problems for homebuyers arise from misjudging a property — such as no appreciation in property rates after investing or high maintenance expenses. In both cases, it may be wise to sell off the property. Since the real estate market is cyclical in nature, you should wait for the most appropriate time to exit the market.
So it’s always best to do your due diligence before investing in a property. Remember, prevention is always better than cure when it comes to buying a house. The good news is, there are ways to avoid these home buying mistakes. Let’s discuss some of them.
Not Getting Everything in Writing
Read the agreement papers well and make sure you’re getting what you’re promised. Everything that was committed should be a part of the written agreement. But most importantly, what you should insist on getting in writing is the completion time. The delivery time-frame is a must-have component of the written agreement that you should not miss.
Overlooking the Added Costs
Owning a home is not just about replacing rentals with EMIs. You have to keep in mind that every expense that was taken care of by the landlord of your rental property is now yours. You have to think of property taxes, utilities, and the maintenance costs, which will keep increasing year after year. All these expenses clubbed together, can often add up to an overwhelming amount.
When buying an apartment in a complex, make sure you ask the developer about utility costs and the price that you will have to pay for annual maintenance. Generally, the annual maintenance is 1% of the total property cost. But it’s always best to get an idea of the expense you’ll be bound to make once you purchase the property.
Stretching the Budget
Home shopping is not like any other shopping as it involves a large amount of financial burden. Stretching the budget for a better home, or a home at a better locality is a mistake that most people often make. New homebuyers, in their state of excitement, look at the higher side of their affordable income, without thinking about what if the income goes down, or if there’s a job cut or a medical emergency. Situations like these can be devastating, especially if you have taken home finance. Home loans are for long tenures, and that means you may have to carry the burden of EMIs for many years. This is why it’s important to important to buy a home with amenities that you really need.
Another common mistake that homebuyers make is replacing household items to match their brand new property. Now, we do understand that aesthetic is important and to turn your new house into your dream home, you will need to invest in décor.
Many homebuyers upgrade everything from furniture to the television set and other appliances, to complement their new home. But the costs of these extras will add to your expenses and keep piling up. This can be a costly mistake, especially, if you have a financial commitment in the form of EMIs — after all, you don’t want to be debt trapped, right? Instead, you could opt for these economical ways to breathe life into your home décor.
If you want to feel more confident about the builders’ reputation, proper documentation and the legality of the construction, it’s best to opt for a pre-approved property. These type of properties are vetted by a bank/financial institution to ensure that the documents are in place and the construction is legally authorised.
Plus, renowned marketing agents such as NK Realtors also perform legal due diligence, which can put you one step ahead in the process of selecting the right property.
Keeping these aspects on top of your mind before investing in a property will ensure that you don’t fall prey to common home buying mistakes — and most importantly, prevent buyer’s remorse from overshadowing the joys of owning a home.