Skip To Content

    15 Things People Wish They'd Known Before Buying A House

    "I was not expecting to get hit with a $15,000 plumbing issue three months after closing."

    Buying a home is a huge accomplishment, but the process comes with its ups and downs. So, we recently asked members of the BuzzFeed Community to share one thing they wish they'd known before buying a house.

    Here's the advice they had to give:

    1. Save more than just the downpayment — you'll have other home costs that you'll need to cover.

    dad with kid putting money in savings jar

    2. On a similar note, you might need to shell out some cash for anything you discover to be broken in the house.

    3. Take your after-tax income and expenses into account when figuring out what you can afford as a house payment. Lenders may approve you for a loan amount that's higher than what you can realistically pay.

    4. Be veeeery careful with what you purchase on your credit card once you start the home-buying process.

    5. If you're self-employed, planning in advance is extra important.

    A model with a laptop and papers

    6. Understand that buying a house is almost like a full-time job. It requires a lot of communication with professionals, and it may feel draining.

    7. Work with a realtor who's willing to help you through the process with your best interests in mind.

    A real estate agent showing a home to a couple

    8. Go through the loan pre-approval process before you start looking at homes.

    9. And, don't get too starry-eyed over a flipped home that looks pristine and polished on the outside.

    10. Make sure the location suits your lifestyle needs. You can fix many things that are wrong with your home, but you can't fix the wrong location.

    The Painted Ladies landmark homes in San Francisco

    11. Don't forget to inspect the basement before you buy!!! It could potentially help you avoid an expensive disaster.

    12. Be aware of the cost of caring for (or cutting down) trees on your property.

    Model with a chainsaw cutting a tree

    13. Avoid the hassle of moving in, then moving out again for renovations by making your home improvements before you start living there.

    14. Avoid being buried by homeowners association (HOA) fees.

    Blocks that say "HOA" with a tiny house figurine on top

    15. And, just remember to stay open-minded. Buying a house is a huge milestone, after all.

    Note: Submissions have been edited for length and/or clarity.

    If this sounds like music to your ears (and bank account), check out more of our personal finance posts.