Taking the leap from renting to buying your first home is a huge step that intimidates a lot of people. This is why we created the Ultimate new homeowner’s checklist that every new property owner or thinking of owning needs to know. Obviously new is better than old. Your home’s value will always increase, and newly-built adobes are better than old ones.

1. New homes are better for your health and for your wallet

New homes will most likely be better insulated and energy-efficient, meaning you will be helping the environment at the same time as cutting the cost of your energy bills. On top of all this, a new home is less likely to require maintenance or to be associated with harmful materials, ie. asbestos and mold.

2. Prices are not always on the rise

The real estate market is cyclical, it goes up, down, and back up again, so do your best not to obsess over rising house prices or when is the best time to buy. Focus instead on the ideal home you would want.

3. Going down the road without a real estate agent

When purchasing through a real estate agent, reduces a considerable amount of administrative hassle, though choosing to do it alone, can save you a lump sum of money. For example, using online agencies, or being creative and dropping off flyers at the doors of homes in areas where you’re interested in buying.

4. Bigger is not always better

Bigger houses only appeal to a selective number of buyers who can afford them. Though owning a bigger home appears to be a better investment, it could potentially limit your access to buyers when you choose to resell in the future.

5. Is my house the Ugliest Duckling on the block?

There’s nothing wrong with your house being a bit of a fixer-upper, as long as you have the time and money to fix it. We’re talking about minor repairs. And as long as plumbing and electricity are in good shape, personal renovations will not only add value to the property’s resale value but will also give your home character.

6. Fixer-uppers is a less competitive market

A fixer-upper home costs significantly less than the perfect home, but that’s not the only advantage. When it comes down to standing out in the crowd of potential buyers, there is a lot less competition for these homes.

7. Knowledge is power

Adding expert repair knowledge to the list of things you will learn when working on a fixer-upper home. Remodeling may take more time and effort, but the renovation will better equip you to take care of your home in the long run.

8. Quality is always better than quantity

There is a huge difference between buying a slightly rundown house with a solid foundation and a chic new property with walls as thin as cardboard. Do not be fooled by appearances. Always check whether the structure was built to last. Especially when it comes to purchasing a new home, simply they have not been around long enough to be tested out over time, says, Local Records Office.

Space is usually thought about in terms of the number of rooms a property has. Consider purchasing a property with fewer rooms, and more space per square foot and you can easily convert it into a spacious new bedroom, ensuite bathroom, or study.

9. Get a reputable home inspector/surveyor

Make notes as you follow along, so you will be able to use any problems they have encountered for any future negotiations. This also will set you up with a decent checklist of things you will need to complete, in case you decide to move forward with purchasing the property.

10. Speak to your neighbors

And find out who your potential neighbors are. Ask them about any plans they may have in putting up new additions. Their new tennis court or garden fence might lower the value of your property in the future.

11. Get a map of your property lines

Knowing where your property starts and ends will minimize conflicts with your neighbors, especially if one of you decides to extend or remodel the garden.

12. Showhome versus your actual purchase home

Do not be misled by the old show home trick as property developers will purposefully select the brightest and most spacious model houses to entice buyers. Always ask to see a number of empty houses within the track to get a better idea of what you could be investing further time and effort on.

13. How the internet can be a useful tool in finding out more information

When it comes down to figuring out what to expect when purchasing a new home, the internet has a lot of useful information, from crime statistics to future developments in the area. Plus, property forums such as sites like Reddit have loads of expert advice and experiences written by homebuyers. Research and learn from their knowledge, tips, and mistakes.

14. Check nearby areas for regeneration

You might have your heart set already on an idyllic neighborhood near the city, but it might be wise to invest in an area that is going through gentrification. Look in the neighborhood for evidence to become the next best investment in the form of new cafes, restaurants, and shops, as ongoing renovation is usually a sign of a developing area.

15. You do not have to live on a conventional property

There is a growing movement of people shunning traditional-style homes with their eyes on tiny homes (perfect for when you are ready to downsize and do not need a large space) or a houseboat on water (for those of you who have sea legs). Explore your options – you may be surprised by the endless possibilities.

16. Pool your family’s money together

Want a large space to house your entire family, (including your parents)? Then why not pool your money together to buy a home that is big enough for all? You may be able to get a home that has separate living areas or even separate properties to house multiple generations.

17. Create space on your own turf grounds

Why not consider extending or building an annex on your current home or extra land that rather than sitting, can be an alternative to moving? It can be a lot cheaper and will even add value to your current home. For those elderly parents that need at-home care, having them live on your property can be a huge advantage.

18. Building your home yourself

In case you are up for the challenge, building your own home yourself can be huge savings in costs in making the property you actually want. It may have more upfront costs, but you can end up with a large profit from the resale of your new home.

19. Do your homework

Purchasing ex-industrial land can work to your advantage; it mostly tends to be located in urban areas. There are a few challenges you must consider before committing to this kind of purchase. The land might be contaminated, as for example, it had previously been used as a site where chemicals were present. Demolition of the structure can be a pain and traffic management in a constricted urban space can end up being a headache.

20. Investing and becoming a landlord can be an option to increase potential income

Have you been considering investing in property? There are plenty of online forums, such as YouTube channels, blogs, and books to help you successfully enter the property market. Take your time to do research online and connect with other landlords. Speak with your friends and colleagues; someone may have a contact that can help establish your business.

21. Public auctions

Online searching might seem like the quickest solution to your housing needs, but it will not necessarily lead you to the greatest investments. Property auctions are a great way to find deals, and generally are open to the public.

22. It could save you a fortune

Here are two main reasons why a property is sold at auction: the owner fell behind on mortgage payments, or they cannot afford their property taxes. Generally, the starting bid at the auction is what was left from the mortgage balance, and gives you the high potential of paying significantly less than the property’s market value.

23. Some people want to keep renting

A home is often thought of as one of the things you must do during your life, but it doesn’t necessarily work out that way for everyone. In case you prefer the freedom to relocate and do not want to be tied down, then renting can often be a better option, as it offers more flexibility.