Couple looking for a house online

Not all home buyers are first-time buyers. Some of you out there have bought and sold many homes, and you already know which pitfalls to avoid.

However, as professional real estate agents, we see some of these myths believed by home buyers over and over again, and we want to warn you about them.

Myth #1: Start by looking for a house.

I see red flags all over when I look at buyers browsing for homes before they do anything else. Yes, searching online is fun, but you might get your heart set on a house you can't afford.

Don't make any assumptions about your price range before you do the work of getting pre-approved. The bank is the only one who can tell you what kind of house you can afford.

Myth #2: You don't need an agent.

How hard can it be to find and buy a house on your own? It can be a lot harder than it needs to be if you don't have an agent.

We can search for things you can't, we have a lot more experience than you do, we can negotiate better than you can, and we can give your home-buying experience our full-time attention.

Myth #3: Go for the 30-year mortgage.

While many people do choose the 30-year mortgage option because the monthly payments are lower, other mortgage options might fit better.

The disadvantage to a 30-year fixed interest loan is that you may end up paying more for your house than if you had opted for a 15-year or even a variable interest loan.

Myth #4: You have to have a 20% down payment.

You will have to pay for private mortgage insurance, but a 20% down payment isn't necessary. You can even get a loan through the Federal Housing Administration with a 3.5% down payment.

Myth #5: You have to have good credit.

Speaking of the FHA, these loans can be the answer for those whose credit scores are low and who don't have a substantial down payment. While they aren't the answer for everyone, they are loans to keep in mind.

Myth #6: If you have a down payment, you're in business.

The myth that you only need the down payment is not true. There are several significant up-front costs of buying a home. Closing costs can be anywhere from 3% to 6% of the purchase price. Added to that are taxes, fees, inspections, credit reports, insurance, and other payments.

Myth #7: You can skip an inspection.

Yes, inspections cost money. And yes, a seller may go for your offer over others if you're willing to waive an inspection, but beware.

Not all problems are visible. You could end up paying ten times more money to fix something an inspector would have easily caught. It is important not to skip an inspection.

Bringing it Home

Avoid believing these common home-buyer myths and make an informed and supported decision. As always, we are honored to help you with any of your real estate questions and needs if you are looking in the Detroit Metro area. Please don't hesitate to call us!