What I Wish I Knew before my #FirstHouse Purchase

In May 2016, I bought my first house.

I was:

  • 24 years old
  • Recently single
  • Shopping in one of Canada’s hottest housing markets (Hamilton, ON)
  • Unaware of so much information

Of course, buying my first house was a HUGE learning experience. I didn’t know anything about the housing market, mortgages, house maintenance/structures, home insurance, bills, taxes, lawyers, or loan institutions (I thought there were only banks!)

I knew that:

  • I needed to find a place to live
  • I had enough money for a large down-payment
  • I wanted to live downtown
  • I wanted little year-round maintenance
  • I wanted large bedrooms
  • I wanted 2 bathrooms
  • I wanted lots of natural lighting

Shortly after purchasing the house, my repertoire of information expanded 10-fold. I now know I should have:

  • negotiated for a better rate using my excellent credit and financial history
  • looked closely at the electrical and plumbing
  • budgeted more for repairs and minor renovations
  • prepared for mice and bugs
  • talked to neighbours about the street noise

I also should have been reading articles from the Financial Consumer Agency of Canada.  Although, in retrospect, I don’t think I would have understood the information as well as I do now.

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