Buying a home can be a stressful process – especially if you’ve never done it before! From searching for the perfect starter home to securing financing and making an offer, the challenges can be numerous. And what makes it even more difficult is that every individual’s situation is different, so it can be challenging to get good advice from friends and family that have been through the process before.
But if you’re worried about the homebuying process, you don’t have to be! Lots of agencies throughout the state offer excellent homebuyer education classes targeted specifically at first-time buyers to help them start to understand everything that goes into the process of purchasing a home. And today, we’re highlighting a few of the important things you can learn from participating in one of these classes!
Finances: Owning Vs Renting
It might seem like common sense – owning a home is very different from renting one. But when push comes to shove, lots of first time homeowners aren’t prepared for everything that comes along with homeownership, which can lead to some unpleasant issues hitting your wallet… HARD. For example – when you rent an apartment, condo, or single-family home, your landlord typically handles any repairs and maintenance work that needs to be done to major home systems, like your kitchen appliances, HVAC, etc.
But when you own a home, you’re in charge – and you’re the one who gets the bill. Budgeting for home maintenance and repair expenses is an important part of being a responsible homeowner, so when you’re looking for a home you can afford, it’s important to factor an emergency fund into your budget so that you can handle any surprises that might come up. Luckily, homebuyer education classes will teach you about all this and more!
Mortgages & Down Payment Assistance
One of the best benefits of a homebuyer education class – especially one that’s accredited by the Maryland Mortgage Program – is that you’ll learn about all sorts of different mortgage and down payment assistance opportunities that can help you get into your new house faster and for less money up front.
The state government, local government, and various community agencies have come together in recent years to develop a number of amazing assistance opportunities that can help ease some of the burden of buying a new home and incentivize new buyers to take the plunge into homeownership. In fact, the Maryland Mortgage Program requires completion of a recognized homebuyer education course in order to be eligible for any of its funding options.
Lots of homebuyer education classes offer another exceptional benefit – one-on-one counseling with a specialist in purchasing a home for the first time. This meeting time is invaluable when it comes to working with an expert who can answer all of your questions impartially and with your best interests at heart, since they don’t benefit financially from pushing you toward one particular home or mortgage.