Preparing to Buy Your First Home

posted in: Banking Tips, Mortgages | 0

Are you planning on buying a home in the near future? Making a big move is exciting, but it can be a little intimidating if you are buying your first place. Understanding the process will help you make the right decisions and give yourself enough time to consider all of the important factors. Choosing a new home is a big decision, and it is important to align yourself with the right professionals who will represent your best interest in the transaction.

Speak to a mortgage professional. You can find a list of professionals by visiting our Mortgage Rate Comparison page. Before you even start looking for a home, it is important to understand the financial aspect of what will be required from you. A mortgage professional will review your application and let you know if you ready to purchase, how much money you will need to put aside, and which documents you will need to provide when you submit your final application. Securing financing ahead of time will prevent any unforeseen credit issues and also help you calculate how owning a home will impact your monthly budget.

Determine your priorities. After you have figured out how much you are able to spend, you can determine exactly what you are looking for. Take some time to browse through listings online so that you have an idea of what to expect in your desired area. There are lots of important things to consider when buying a home. How close do you want to be from work? What schools are in the area? Is there public transit nearby? Determine what is most important for you and outline your ideal requirements.

Enlist the help of a real estate professional. A licensed Realtor will take the time to review your must-haves and be able to help you narrow down your search of potential properties. Be sure to explain exactly what you are looking for to avoid visiting properties that don’t interest you. Be clear about your expectations, especially when it comes to price. Your Realtor will be able to inform you of any new listings that come on the market and will be your best asset when negotiating the purchase price of your new home.

Have a look around and take some time to visit a few properties. Making a decision too quickly might cause you to second guess your choice later on. Seeing several properties will allow you to have a good idea what is available in your price range. If you are considering a home that needs upgrades or repairs, calculate the cost before you submit your offer. Renovations can add up if you need to hire professional help, but often homes that need some work are available for a great deal. Get an idea of what you will need to spend after closing, and ask your Realtor to determine the future value of the property once the work has been completed. Buying a home can be a great investment if you are willing to put in a little extra work to bring it up to date.

Make an offer. Once you have shopped the market and found the perfect home, it’s time to make an offer. Ask about comparable sales in the area, and make sure you are paying fair market value for your new home. If you find yourself in competition, think your decision through carefully and try not to get overwhelmed by the process. Once your offer has been accepted, all you need to do is wait patiently for your closing date. Be sure to keep your finances in good standing to avoid any issues with your mortgage. Once you have your keys in hand, all that is left for you to do is move in and enjoy!