BY: RODNEY BEASLEY
If you’re considering purchasing a home, you’ve likely already considered how much you have available for a down payment, what an ideal mortgage payment would be, and how much home you can actually afford based on your monthly income. But what about your lifestyle? Have you considered how much wiggle room you need to leave in your home budget to enjoy life? Here are six life factors to consider when buying a home:
Travel is an important goal for many people. Think about the travel goals you have for yourself:
Where do you want to go?
What do you want to see?
How long are your ideal trips?
How much money would you need on an annual basis to make your travel goals possible?
Is this already factored into your budget or will you need to cut back on travel to fund your monthly mortgage payment and home expenses?
There are no right or wrong answers, but it’s important to reflect on your priorities.
2. Green Thumb?
Do you love gardening, being outside, and all things landscaping? If you purchase a home with a lawn and don’t enjoy the upkeep, you could be looking at an extra $100 or more a month for professional landscape maintenance. Are you willing to skip the lawn in favor of hardscaping to reduce costs?
Factor hobbies and services into your monthly budget to see if the numbers still work out in the black.
3. Pool Time
How dreamy would it be to buy a home with a pool!? Before the dream becomes reality, add up the costs of pool maintenance and servicing, energy, and insurance (along with liability if you have small children) and you may be better off heading to the neighborhood swimming hole.
Pools can be a lot of fun, but they come with a lot of work. Factor time and money into your future plans when buying a home with this special feature and, once again, ask yourself if the numbers add up to support your other financial goals.
If you’re buying a home and plan to start a family in the next few years, don’t just consider the amount of mortgage you can afford under your current expenses. Factor in daycare costs and then determine what your cash flow will look like. You may have to adjust the amount of home you’re looking to purchase.