1. You don’t pay your real estate agent.
The seller pays them. This explains why some agents might try and make you spend more than you can afford on a house, because that means a bigger commission for them. But the good ones won’t push you, so get one of those.
2. Even though you promised yourself you wouldn’t, you will look at homes out of your price range.
And be severely heartbroken that you can’t afford them.
3. Zillow/Redfin/All other real estate apps will dominate your phone/computer/life.
“I Zillow-ed it” should be the new term for when someone asks why you look so bummed out.
4. Short sales are not short.
The “short” means short of the home’s value, not time. A short sale can actually take months to process, and even then the deal can fall through. Nothing like six months of anxiety!
5. You will most likely be beat out on several offers.
Cash buyers are the bane of your existence and probably act just like this. Who are these people anyway? WHO ARE THESE PEOPLE?
6. When your offer is finally accepted, you will have a moment of doubt.
THEY ACCEPTED? WHAT NOW?!!!
7. Choosing a mortgage lender is like choosing a college.
Should you go with a big company or a small company? Ah, who cares? Like college, this will only put you farther in debt and will force you to eat ramen noodles and Tang, since that will be all you can afford now.
8. You will come to despise your signature.
There is so much paperwork it is insane, and you either have to sign or initial almost every page. Hello, carpal tunnel!
9. You will answer the same questions from the bank/realtor/lenders over and over again.
You’ve answered why you deposited $233.17 in July of 2011 a million times, and if you have to answer it again somebody is getting hurt.
10. The closing costs will take you by surprise.
“I owe how much? FML.”
11. Remember that mortgage you stressed about choosing? It is almost immediately sold to another company.
What happened to the super nice guy who convinced you to go with his company? Oh, yeah, he’s laughing all the way to the bank. But who cares, because now you’re in your new place and here is where the real fun begins.
12. You will receive a plethora of “important” mail.
None of it is important, and sometimes not even real. However, you are now somehow on some sort of new-homeowners mailing list. And your mailbox will be packed to the brim with life insurance offers reminding you that someday your new home might just kill you.
13. You will want to max out every bank account and credit card to furnish your new place.
Just take a chill pill and relax for a bit. I know you have another bedroom and an empty den just sitting there, but rushing to fill will not do you any favors.
14. Choosing paint colors will make your head explode.
I know it seems permanent, but trust me, it’s not.
15. Hanging pictures will test your every nerve.
You are putting HOLES in the WALLS of the home you just BOUGHT. Better make sure you have a steady hand.
16. You are your own landlord.
That means you are responsible to fix stuff by doing it yourself or hiring someone. Either way, apartment living is looking good right about now.
17. You will become super conscious of protecting your investment.
Not only from the outside world, but from the inside as well. That’s why you’ll have coasters EVERYWHERE and shoes off please, OK?
18. Everything costs sooo much money.
That is why you are now captain of the Lights Patrol and it is your duty to make sure only the necessary ones are on.
19. Every creak and bump and drip will freak you out.
Look, stuff is going to break and repairs will be needed. That’s home ownership.
20. And lastly, the feeling of pride you get when you actually own a home.
Congratulations. You did it. Now sit back and enjoy the — OHMYGODTHERESALEAKINTHETOILET! Well, at least it’s your toilet.