Some of you have started the new year with a winter wedding. Others may be exchanging vows this Valentine’s Day weekend (congrats to all by the way!). The next big life transition that often arrives after a marriage is finding a new home, especially if adding a bundle of joy (or two, three, four?) is on the near horizon. In the spirit of this coming romantic weekend, or for any of you getting hitched in the future, I have decided to use my UBC real estate blog to provide you with a few casual tips to help guide you through the process of finding a new home together as newlyweds.
5 Tips for Newlyweds Looking for a New Home
1. Get Rid of Your Cumulative Debt
It can be tempting to start the house hunting fresh out of the gates but do yourself a favor, be patient, and pay off your debt first. With your combined incomes (when applicable) you can accomplish this quite possibly within the first year of your new union. Once you’re working with a cleaner financial slate, you can find a home and mortgage that works on your terms.
2. Consider Future Income
You may be combining incomes as newlyweds but before you take on that long term mortgage ask yourselves if it will stay that way. Many newlyweds start a family and buy a new home around the same time. When doing so, they often assume that after maternity/paternity leave both will return to the workforce. However more often than one may assume the initial “stay at home” parent becomes a long term “stay at home” parent. They realize they prefer to focus on raising their children – it can be tough to leave a one year old in the hands of daycare. All of a sudden your dual income becomes one, weighing a bit heavier on your finances.
3. Consider School Catchment
For those newlyweds with a family on the horizon moving into a favorable school catchment is essential when considering a new home. The UBC area for example is one of the most popular school catchment districts of Greater Vancouver, offering access to some of the best educational institutions around, from kindergarten to secondary school to post-secondary school.
4. Consider Community
School catchment alone does not a good neighborhood make, for newlyweds planning well in advance. Find your new home in a community that suits both your current and future lifestyle. Everything from the shops, cafes, entertainment, and indoor/outdoor recreational access is important to your quality of life. You’re integrating your entire life as a couple into the community, make sure it’s a good fit for you both.
5. Select a Real Estate Agent Specializing in Finding Homes for Newlyweds and Young Families
There are real estate agents that get into the game only to make a buck. There are others that enjoy more than the career aspirations of it all. There's an intangible reward that comes with finding the perfect home for a young couple that may very well make their new abode a place where many generations of their lineage will grow up. Finding a real estate agent that has worked with newlyweds, young couples, and families is essential to the success of your new home purchase. Having served the family friendly UBC real estate community for many years I am sensitive to the needs of newlyweds and young families considering a home in the area. Feel free to contact UBC Homes anytime and we can start with a casual conversation about taking the next exciting step in your life together.