“It is a new day, a new beginning for your new life. With discipline you will be amazed at how much progress you will be able to make. What have you got to lose except the guilt and fear of the past?” –Jim Rohn
So, you just tied the knot and understandably, it is an incredibly exciting time for you.
After all, you are not beginning a new life with your spouse, but you are also setting out your sights on new and fresh beginnings as well. In this regard, endeavors such as purchasing your first home together and having children are two major milestones that would play a pivotal role in both of your lives. In fact, both events are marked with poignant significance as both are no easy feats and may even be considered as challenges. Both are financial endeavors and purchasing your first home will probably be the biggest investment you will ever make in your life and as a couple. Before you start browsing leaflets for new homes or deciding whether you want a Cloverleaf condo or a townhouse elsewhere, here are some of the things you need to consider before making that big decision:
- Evaluate your financial condition
Before you and your partner were married, you probably had separate accounts and finances. However, now that you are married there is a likely potential that it would be considered as one. Now that you have said your respective “I do’s”, it is important to think and act as one. First off your list should be to access your debts from credit cards. Apart from this, you should also tick off the debts from your previous purchases, vehicles as well as any debt you might have left from your honeymoon or wedding.
- Find out what your credit score is
Your mortgage rate hinges on your credit score. This mean that the higher your score is the lower your interest rate will be and vice versa. Before meeting with a mortgage lender, this step is paramount as it will determine what kind of mortgage you can expect to get.
- What your five year goals are
In five years’ time, you need to ask where you see yourself. Among the things you should consider is whether or not you think you would still be in the same job or if you plan on furthering your education. BY that time, how many children do you think you would have? Do you see yourself in the same home you have initially bought? By answering these questions together, you would be able to determine whether buying a home is the best tack for you as a couple. Moreover, your answers will be indicative of the type of community and neighborhood you should look to buy in and how much you should spend.
- Improve your debts
Before signing any papers and documents, it is imperative that you be aware of the strategies as to how to improve your debts. As you have already evaluated your financial condition, you should already have an idea by now as to what needs to be fixed. In this regard, start paying off your debts (or at least look for a way to reduce them), repair your credit and start saving to buy your new home.
- Your new home wish list
Of course, every couple has a different set of wishes as to what their first home should be like. You and your spouse will likely have different expectations of what you wish for in a home. It can be that they are envisioning of a modern home in a contemporary setting while you are the more traditional one who favors classic homes. Before deciding on a property, it is important to reconcile both of you wants and wishes with your needs. In this regard, you would then be able to create a unified list that would jointly have both of your wants and needs. This list should contain all of your must-haves which are absolutely non-negotiable and the features that you want but could do without.