You can’t have everything you want, but you can have the things that really matter to you,” – Marissa Mayer.

A responsible decision? You bet it is! Buying a home may be something you’ve been waiting for years. However, the process has so many nuances that you may be putting it off unconsciously. If you are planning to buy a home in Florida, you can start by considering a few simple facts. Once you’ve got them down, you’ll be surprised how smoothly the rest will go.

1. Think About A Deed Protected Community
In Florida, there is a big choice of deed-protected communities. This is a neighborhood, which is governed by a homeowners association. Many homeowners benefit from such communities since they consider their needs. However, the flip side of such neighborhoods is the fine print. Some of the rules may not sit well with your habits.

Important: In Florida, your home is protected against foreclosure in case you declare bankruptcy. However, by choosing a deed-protected community, you are foregoing this right. The homeowner’s association has a right to foreclose on your house.

2. Don’t Forget Fees and Taxes
How much will you need to pay to close the deal? All the fees and taxes make up about 4% of the property cost. Make sure you consider this amount when choosing the home of your dreams. If you buy without a mortgage, the expenses can be reduced by about 50% since state tax is levied on the outstanding mortgage, not the house cost.

3. Hire A Florida Realtor
Many things have been said about pros and cons of hiring a realtor, but in the long run, a local realtor can help make the process easier. A good licensed realtor knows the current market conditions and history of some objects as well as the neighborhoods peculiarities. Even if you have lived in Florida for many years, you probably don’t have all the information a good realtor does.

For example, AFS general contractors in Orlando, Florida advise that older homes, which have survived several hurricanes, may look good from the outside, but have many structural problems.

The advantage of choosing a realtor, who is a buyer’s agent, is that you don’t need to pay them for their services. The seller covers their fees. 

4. Consider The Location
Location is the key to buying a home in Florida (as it is in any other state or country). Depending on your needs you can either choose a quiet neighborhood with schools and grocery stores nearby or opt for a busy city center. If you have children, make sure to check out the school ratings. You may want to choose a neighborhood with the best schooling options for your child.

5. Be Smart About A Home Inspection
Before closing the deal, the home must be inspected for such problems as pest infestation, roof leaks, structural issues, plumbing breakdowns, and many more factors. You have a chance to pull out of the deal if the home inspection discovers something you don’t like.

In some cases, the contract includes the seller’s liability to fix the uncovered problems. However, in such a situation, you may be stuck with a cheap quick fix. It’s better to leave yourself an option of pulling out.