Are you currently renting or living with family and feel it’s time to start searching for your first home? If so, the first question on your mind might be, where do I begin? I’m currently a renter myself and I know the process can seem intimidating because I’m personally faced with similar fears. After conducting some research I’ve found the following information to be the most important topics when it comes to finding your first home. I hope that you find this blog useful on your journey to find a new home.
First Things First
Try not to rush. If you can, give yourself and your family some time to compile a list of ideas that you have for your first home. If you have children it may be beneficial to get them involved so that they are not only open to the idea of moving but also help them feel like they’re part of the process. Establish your priorities by dividing your list into two categories, “Must Have” and the “Nice to Have.” In my opinion it’s okay to dream a little bit here; quiet and reflective time may be necessary to help you form your vision. Consider where you want to live, how many rooms you want to have, amenities, etc. Here is a link to a great list to get you started.
Know your Budget
This is one of the most important steps, if not the most important step, in the process of finding your first home. It’s great to gather a list of ideas for your first home but you should also have a very clear budget in mind. A common first time homebuyer mistake that you should try to avoid is not having a clear idea of what you can afford. You may want to work with a trusted mortgage lender, like New American Funding, that can provide you with a formal pre-approval. Having a pre-approval in hand not only gives you a budget but it also shows sellers and real estate agents that you are serious about buying a home.
Explore the Worldwide Web
Once you have established your list of desires for your first home and you have a budget in mind, it’s time to do some research online. Spend some time online to help you get a better idea of the homes out there. There are various resources available so be careful to not limit yourself to just one or even two websites. Try searching websites that have large database of homes online such as Realtor.com, Zillow.com and Trulia.com.
Now that you have an idea of the home you want, a budget in mind, and have spent some time researching, it’s the right time to start seeking advice. Finding a real estate agent that understands your needs and knows the area may not only save you time but also provide very valuable information to help you make a decision. Real estate agents, loan officers and other non-profit organizations are available to help, so don’t be afraid to ask questions!
Enjoy the Journey
It’s only once in a lifetime that you buy your first home, so be sure to take time to enjoy the journey! Try not to get frustrated and stay open minded if you don’t find something right away.
If you found this blog valuable, please share with your family and friends. Good luck first time homebuyers!