Home Buying Guide: Your Path to a New Home
Step 1: Define Your Goals
Before starting your home search, make sure to have clearly set goals: desired neighborhoods, type of home, must-have amenities, etc. As you dive into the market, you may need to be flexible on some of these requirements, but having a best-case list will be helpful.
Step 2: Examine Your Finances
Before purchasing a home, it’s crucial to ensure your finances are under control. Create a detailed budget and make sure you have savings and reserves in place to support your home purchasing goals.
Call several mortgage lenders to find differences in rates, fees, and customer service. Finding the right mortgage lender is essential. Check reviews to ensure you’re choosing someone with a track record of satisfied borrowers. Pre-approval is a good idea at this stage, as you’ll have more power when submitting offers and negotiating with sellers if you’re already approved for a mortgage. Use estimated closing costs to validate you have enough money set aside for this process.
Step 3: Hire a Real Estate Professional
Take some time to research and find a real estate agent who regularly sells similar homes. Look for social proof and check out reviews. If you’re shopping with a spouse, make sure both of you agree on the agent. Home-buying can be a storm, and you want a good captain that you’ll both trust!
Search for Homes
Work with your agent to search homes that meet your goals and criteria. Make sure you view homes in person, as pictures can sometimes be misleading! Don’t get frustrated if you don’t find a home immediately – each showing gives you a chance to learn more about what you can get in your area at your price point. You’ll find a place to call home.
Make an Offer and Negotiate
Once you’ve found the home you’d like to buy, it’s time to make an offer. A good agent earns their money by guiding you through the offer and closing process. Sellers can counter your offer, inspections can reveal possible repairs, and you can suddenly find your budget at risk. Stay calm and continue to communicate with everyone involved. Check your budget, your emotions, and your buying partner to make the next