For many people, buying a home seems like a step towards a certain, preordained lifestyle. It’s one with a family, kids even, and other things that a more traditional idea of where your life is heading encapsulates. But this isn’t actually the case. In fact, the number of single people buying homes, whether they’re completely detached private homes or condos, are only increasing. Some have even suggested one quarter of all home sales in Canada this year will be from single people. While buying homes and being single is increasing, that doesn’t mean the process is the exact same as couples or families. Here are some tips for buying a home while single.
1. Look at Your Finances
Student debt. Credit card debt. Car payments. All of these things are increasingly part of our lives, especially for young people looking to getting in the real estate market. If you have all of these things, you may consider holding off until your debt is more under control and you have a sizeable down payment.
2. Think About Your Job
When you buy a place on your own, there is no one to help you out. So if you get fired, you could run into trouble with your mortgage. As contract labour becomes more and more common, many potential home buyers are employed more and more precariously. Before you head into a mortgage, make sure that your job is as secure as possible, whether that’s a salaried position or freelancing.
3. Look for Special Programs
Since singles are becoming more common on the buying markets, some brokers, government programs, and banks are starting programs to help them. These can include special interest rates, education programs and more. These programs are, unfortunately, sporadic, but they are available, you just have to look for them.
4. Bring a Friend
Getting a second set of eyes on anything is almost always a great idea, and this includes house hunting. Bring a friend, trusted relative, or someone with experience in home buying to house viewings. They can help you talk through things you’re considering and wondering about, as well as point out potential problems with the property. Without that second set of eyes, some things could go undiscovered, both in negative and positive ways.
5. Think About the Future
Buying a home is a longterm investment, so be sure to think about the future with any purchase. For singles, the potential to build a great real estate profile is filled with potential, since you can often live in places that can become great rental properties down the line. Always consider a five, ten, or even twenty year plan when looking at property. Think about where you want to be, and how you will get there, before signing anything. Buying a bachelor pad while in a serious relationship, for example, can be a problem when you decide to move in together.
Buying property when single is becoming more and more common, but it also comes with a different set of challenges. But with the right financial knowhow and careful consideration, you can find something that’s perfect for you now, and the future.