Are you in the market for your first home purchase? If so, congratulations! This is an amazingly exciting stage of life, and we know you must be excited.
Many first-time buyers run into issues that can turn their new home into a source of stress. Here are three common pitfalls you should watch out for as you purchase your first home.
Biting Off More Than You Can Chew
Far and away the most common pitfall that first-time home buyers run into is with setting realistic expectations. It’s a tough market for first-time buyers, and many are tempted to jump in deeper than they can manage. Just because you can get a mortgage without a full down payment doesn’t necessarily mean that you should, for example.
Your mortgage payment is going to be a reasonable percentage of your take-home pay, but don’t let it get too high. Many experts recommend 25 to 30%. And consider what your financial situation will look like if in a few years you add a child or two to the mix.
Everyone’s situation is different, but none of us have infinite money. Take the time to calculate what you can truly afford, and then stick to those figures. You may well tour your dream home as you look at available properties, but living there won’t be dreamy at all if it puts you in financial distress.
Not Considering Non-Mortgage Costs
If you’ve been renting all of your adult life, you need to be prepared for some non-mortgage costs that you probably haven’t had to pay yet.
First, understand that all repairs to your new home and property are your responsibility. If you have a $2,000 sewer repair crop up in the first 2 months of living there, do you have a way to pay for it? When you’re budgeting for your home purchase, make sure there’s enough left over to cover unexpected issues like these.
Second, if you’re bringing a full down payment to the table, there’s one more non-mortgage cost that could catch you by surprise: property tax. Make sure you know before you buy what property taxes are like on similar homes, and save 1/12th of that amount each month.
Making a Purchase Decision Too Quickly
A third pitfall for first-time homebuyers is rushing the purchase decision. Don’t get us wrong, we want you to buy a house! But your house is a long-lasting investment. Get to know various parts of your city, and take your time surveying what properties are available in your price tier.
Most first-time homebuyers won’t be in a position to sell and move up in house for at least five years. So don’t rush the purchase decision. Be sure before you commit.
117- 119 Albion, Wakefield, MA 01880
17-17A Albion St, Wakefield, MA 01880
There are few things more frustrating than finding out that the plants you’ve been tending to all summer have been overrun with insects and aren’t producing any fruit. Perhaps even worse is when you find a trail leading into your pantry where your food has been compromised by a tiny army of ants.
Keeping the pests out of your home and garden is a difficult task made even harder if you want to do it without using harsh chemicals and pesticides. However, there are ways you can effectively keep your food safe. In this article, we’ll show you how.
Protecting your garden from pests
The most important tool you have at your disposal when it comes to protecting your lawn, flowers, and garden from pests is your own vigilance.
In the garden, take note of the condition of your plants’ leaves. Look on the underside of them for small, yellow or brown dots. These are often insect eggs that will soon hatch and result in your plants being devoured before they can produce crops.
As a last-ditch effort to keep the bugs away, you can try spraying your plants with a homemade insecticidal soap spray. These sprays are usually 95% water and then a small amount of pure castile soap or vinegar. Be sure not to use too much or this can harm your plants or soil.
Whether you live in the city, the suburbs, or in the country, there are likely to be some furry creatures who see your garden as a food source. One way to keep many away is by framing the garden with a simple metal wire fence.
If it’s flowers you’re worried about, try planting them in mulch and keeping the leaves dry when possible. This will avoid excess moisture which can cause plant-killing diseases. Using a watering can rather than a hose will help you target the base of the plant and keep the leaves dry.
Keeping the bugs outside
Regardless out whether your home is old or new, you’ll likely someday find yourself with an insect problem. Some are lured in by warmth in the cold seasons, others are seeking a food source.
Let’s begin on the exterior of your home. Check for cracks in your foundation and along doors and windows and seal these cracks up. Next, if there’s a space under your door, install an aluminum door threshold if there is a gap between your door and the floor. While you’re there, make sure the weather stripping on your door is in good condition.
Next, make sure all of the screens in your doors, windows, and other ventilation areas are in good condition. Even the tiniest tear can be enough to let in flies and other insects.
The final step in keeping the bugs out of your home is to remove what’s luring them there in the first place. Store your food in airtight storage containers within your cabinets. Not only will this keep bugs away, but it can also make organizing food easier, especially things you might not use often, like flour or a large bag of sugar.
Texture is one of the most overlooked style elements for a home. Most people think about color and trendy furniture when remodeling their home or planning to move into a new property. Yet, texture makes a big difference to your comfort and the actual experience you and your visitors have. It doesn’t have to be challenging to add a bit of inviting, warming texture to your space.
Let’s consider some of the easiest ways to add texture into a home. Whether you are remodeling or just moving into a home you bought, these strategies work well.
#1: Add a Rug
It’s hard to cover up beautiful hardwood floors. However, adding a stunning rug adds a layer of texture and character to the space. The right rug makes all of the difference. A high pile can offer a plush, sink-your-feet-into appeal to it. You can also get some added texture if you add a rug with fringe or tassels on it. The addition of a rug can change the whole feeling of a room from an open, stark area to an inviting, warm sanctuary.
#2: Invest in Natural Materials
There are several ways to build natural elements into the space. You can start by adding greenery. Plants offer pops of color and organic shapes to your living space. They also help to enhance the quality of the air in your home.
Don’t stop there. Also, consider natural fibers like linen pillows or a wall hanging made of bamboo.
#3: Add in Some Hard Elements
There’s something interesting and eye-catching about adding stone to your home. You can also add timber to the interior by introducing a bench by a window or entryway. The key here is to bring in strong, natural elements. The soft, cool texture of a stone walkway into the living room or in the bathroom is an excellent way to invite a new feel to the home.
#4: Choose Flowing Curtains
Though old-style curtains create a very dominating look to a home, today’s curtains can add a lot more class and texture. Choose materials that are interesting or meaningful to you. One of the best ways to add a softness to a room is with flowing, sheer curtains. With the windows open, they can easily create a casual, relaxed appeal in the space. Thicker curtains can create more of a tailored look.
#5: Textured Walls
While stucco inside the home isn’t generally the way to go, there are plenty of other ways to add a beautiful level of texture to your home’s walls. French wash paint is a good option. You may also consider materials like embossed wallpaper or grasscloth.
There are easy, effective ways to add texture to your living space. The more types of texture you add, the more personalized and inviting the space can be.