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Getting Cold Feet as a First-Time Homebuyer

It’s interesting how much buying a home has in common with making other decisions, like choosing a spouse, or having a baby, or even going to the pet store and adopting a new puppy! All of these major decisions in life stress out our commitment tendencies. Just as it is with anything, people have different strengths and some are better at making changes than others. That’s not to say that everyone who gets cold feet as a first-time homebuyer has an issue with commitment, because obviously buying a home is a big deal. And it’s the same big deal in the Indianapolis real estate market as any other. Yet, just like any big deal in life, the reward for making that leap can ultimately be very satisfying and much better than indecision.

But that’s just about the psychology of making a big decision, and in this case, a big purchase. What if you make a mistake? How can you get out of it? These answers aren’t easy for the first-time homebuyer but what can ease your mind is to consider a few items when you really want to get out of that apartment (or maybe even your parents’ house!) and plant some roots of your own—living the American dream of owning a home!

Want to paint all of your interior walls of your Indianapolis home a Prince 1999 purple? Install a fountain smack-dab in the middle of your living room? Have 4 Great Danes? Host poker night that goes into the wee-hours of the morning? Freedoms like these come with having a home you can call your own. Of course, you may have to consult with your spouse, if you have one, about various forms of extreme decorating, late-night entertaining or housing a pack of dogs but otherwise, the choice is yours.

There are also many logistical financial and real estate advantages you gain by owning your own home. For example, quite often, your home will gain at least some appreciation over time. This is an automatic savings account for you. Evaluate with a REALTOR what you may be able to expect as far as gaining value in your home over time for the area you are in. Also, consider all of the tax deductions you will be able to take because of home ownership. These include but are not limited to mortgage interest and property tax deductions. There may even be first-time homebuyer tax credits available to you. And, if you are anxious about sinking savings into the down payment of your home because of the potential of rainy-day needs, consider all the options you may have taking out a home equity line of credit.

Ultimately, as with any major life decision, you need to be ready to move forward and feel good about it. Sure, anyone may try to push you into a move, but ultimately you are the one signing the contracts and all the subsequent checks so you need to be ready. Be sure you can afford your home and understand all the terms of the contract before you sign on the dotted line. Nullifying a real estate contract is not easy and, at the least, you may lose your earnest money.

Evaluate where you are about commitments in general before you look for a home to determine how ready you are to make a big leap into the world of homeownership. After that, proceed with caution—and excitement—because sometimes there is very little as satisfying as driving up to your own home after a long day!