This post may contain affiliate links. Please read our Affiliate Disclosure page.

If you’re considering purchasing a home, you want to take this important financial step carefully and well. While focusing on putting your best foot forward, though, it’s easy to realize that real estate investments aren’t among your “comfort zone” of things you’ve done before! You want to make sure your investment grows and is cared for, and especially that you are careful with your own finances. How can you make the best decisions about becoming a new homeowner?

Work With Professionals

While there are some individuals experienced enough to not need additional help when making real estate purchases, you definitely want to find a great real estate agent. What should you look for? Somebody who is experienced in the area in which you want to purchase is key. Find someone who understands what you need for your family, like if you need a fenced yard because you have children, or no second story because of a disability. A good agent can help you through inspections, appraisals, and the final closing with a real estate lawyer, so you know your home is not only purchased, but safe and prepared for you.

Don’t Buy Too Much House

A house is the biggest investment you’ll likely ever make.  You don’t, however, want it to be too big. Likewise, you should remember that if you have three bathrooms, you have to clean three bathrooms. Having a family with sufficient space is better financially in the long term than a family that has a great deal of space. It’s okay if children share bedrooms, and it’s okay to stay within your budget.

Don’t Have Too Much Debt

Banking institutions recommend that your mortgage be no more than 28% of your monthly gross income, but there’s a caveat. While they might happily give you a loan for as much as you qualify for, banking institutions do not factor in things like medical debt (or future medical needs), or educational debt. You need to factor your debt into your purchase needs, to make sure your investment stays safe.

Your future home is waiting, but don’t feel pressured to purchase too much or to spend outside of your capacity. Work with qualified professionals who have your best interest in mind. Then, when you sleep in your new home, you know you can sleep peacefully, having made a good investment!

Read this next: Why Families Need to Be Investing Their Money for the Long Term