If you are thinking of buying your first
home, you should take out a pen and paper right now and draw a line down
the center of the paper. Calmly and logically, think of all possible
advantages to buying a home and write them down on one side of the page.
Afterwards, you should list all the disadvantages.
Then save the list in a place you will be
certain to remember.
Of course it sounds silly. Who needs to
write down their reasons for buying a home? After all, home ownership is
the central theme to living the "American Dream."
Naturally, while in hot pursuit of this
dream you are going to be excited about the future -- researching
neighborhoods, searching MLS sites on the internet, viewing homebuyer’s
magazines full of appealing homes that are just "minutes from the
beach" with "fantastic views" and "cozy family
Next comes the really good stuff –
looking at houses. Full of imagination and optimism for the future, you
wander about each home envisioning a happy and contented life for you
and your family. The first house may be "too big," and another
may be "too small," but you are certain to find one that seems
"just right." So you make an offer and wait anxiously and
excitedly for the counter-offer. Finally, you and the seller agree on
terms and you have bought yourself a brand new home!
Congratulations! Break out the champagne
Later that night or perhaps the next day,
you start to worry about whether you made the right decision. Doubtful
thoughts will intrude. Can you afford it? Is it the right time? Should
you have waited? What if you lose your job? What if this happens? What
if that happens? Anxiety and stress set in. Sleep may be hours in
This is a normal response to buying a
home and is called "Buyer’s Remorse." You have just made the
single biggest purchase you have ever made in your life and it can be
downright scary. Logic deserts you. Worry takes over.
Remember your list?
Back when you were thinking
semi-logically, you were fairly rational about home ownership. You
catalogued the good and the bad, weighed them against each other, and
decided that buying a home was the smart thing to do. Reviewing the list
will help resolve your buyer’s remorse.
You will not be totally stress-free, but
it will help.
Of course, in spite of this advice you
will probably not take the time to make that list now – before
you buy a home. Hardly anyone ever does.
So when buyer’s remorse sets in and you
remember reading this column, here is what you do -- get a piece of
paper and draw a line down the center. Then…
You know the rest.
copyright 2000 by Terry
Light and RealEstate ABC