One of the most exciting and life-changing experiences a family can go through is expecting a child. If that sounds like you, congratulations! As families expand, whether this is your first child or your fourth, chances are you’ll be looking to expand the amount of bedrooms or space of your home, which often times means packing house and finding a new place. With baby on the way, moving can sound like the last thing you want on your plate, but it doesn’t have to be a stressful experience! Planning ahead can help eliminate stress, and help you figure out the best strategy for purchasing a home with a baby on the way.
Below you’ll find three of the most useful tips to remember when purchasing a home with a child on the way!
Budget it Out
Perhaps the most important part of finding a new home, is determining how much you can, or want, to spend on a new home. This is where budgeting comes in! You can utilize online calculators to help you determine what a comfortable budget would be for you and your growing family, and how a potential mortgage would play into your month-by-month expenses. Generally, you won’t want to pay more than 28% of your gross monthly income on your mortgage. Additionally, you can also considering consulting with an experienced lender to obtain more personalized professional advice if that makes you feel more comfortable deciding on a final number.
Plan Ahead for Baby Expenses
When planning ahead, keep an eye on your overall cash flow month-to-month, and think about how your household expenses may change once your child is born. Extra short-term expenses will not be part of your normal routine (think diapers, baby clothes, formula or baby food, child-care services etc.)
Additionally, mothers who work full or part-time will usually have a short-term decrease in cash-flow depending upon their employers parental leave policies and benefits. Take all of these extra expenses and potentially lessened income when discussing your plans to buy a home with a lender.
Lenders have been known to deny mortgages to pregnant women who may not be able to provide assurance that they will return to work soon enough in order to ensure that payments can be made. While something like this is considered to be a violation of the Fair Housing Act, a bank can legally consider your overall ability to make future payments in the event that a mortgage loan applicant had been based on income that could potentially fluctuate after a child is born.
Determine Your Housing Needs
Take the time to think about what you and your family may need in a new home, including space for the new baby! Of course, you will need more bedrooms, but look at the layout of potential homes and how the location of rooms in the house will affect how you live your day-to-day. Is the master bedroom on the other end of the house from the other bedrooms? Do you want your child’s room to be closer to you?
Additionally, you will want to keep an eye out for any potential hazards such as unprotected railings, unprotected stairs, fireplace hearths, or other parts of a home that aren’t baby-proofed. Furthermore, research information such as how schools in the neighborhood are, how your commute to and from work will be, how busy or quiet the area is, and more.
These are just a select few of the many different things that should always be considered when it comes to purchasing a new home while also expecting a new baby.
Thank you for reading our real estate and homeowner’s blog. We are Weichert Realtors – Barton Harris & Co. and we’re happy to have helped you learn more purchasing a home with a baby on the way.