No one expects you to know everything when you are buying a home. If you did, then you wouldn't need us! So, it's our job to be the experts while helping you--the home buyer--along the way.
Here are the top three things home buyers and first-time home buyers should know when they begin the home search and eventual buying process:
Home Buyer Must-Know #1
Know what you want.
We know...you think you know what you want. But do you?
Sit down. Write a list of non-negotiables. And for the love, be reasonable with yourself. What is it that you actually want that is also within reach? Here are some quick and easy questions to consider when making your dream home wish list. This is just a start, but hopefully these questions will help get your wheels turning:
- How many bedrooms do you need to fit your family and needs?
- Would you like a lot of land, or a low maintenance yard?
- Is there a specific school district you would like to live in?
- How close would you like to be to work? To family? To downtown?
Home Buyer Must-Know #2
Know what you DON'T want.
Sometimes it's easier to start here. You may know you definitely do NOT want a pool, or a certain style of house (i.e. ranch, raised ranch, colonial, split level, etc.) Whatever the case, write down your deal breakers and stick to them! The worst thing you can do is settle in this process, so do everything you can to avoid regret from the beginning.
- What style of house do you hate?
- What areas of town do you want to avoid?
- How important is the kitchen to you, and what are some deal breakers for kitchen layout?
- Do you want to avoid homes with pools?
No question is off limits in this process. Be honest with yourself and your family so you can set expectations from the very beginning.
Home Buyer Must-Know #3
Understand available financing.
You'd be surprised at how many options are available to first-time home buyers, and home buyers in general. The most important thing is to meet with a mortgage professional who can tell you what products are available based on your credit score, income, house location, condition of the property, and more. You'll want to do this before you ever begin the home buying process, because pre-approval will be critical as you start your search.
There are also ways you can write your offer that may help close the gap between cash on hand and what money becomes available to you. The bottom line? Understand that you can get creative as long as you are working with professionals who know how it all works and are willing to help you along the way.
Knowing how much cash you have to work with will also be extremely helpful as you begin to work through your budget and what you can afford to buy. Think price range, affordability, and make sure you consider taxes.
- How much cash do you have to put down on your home?
- Do you have money to put into potential fixes? (i.e. new windows, roof, furnace maintenance, aesthetic updates like paint, carpet/flooring, bathroom remodels, etc.)
- How much are you willing/able to pay in taxes?
Buying a home can be overwhelming, but we are here to help.
Have questions? Contact us today!
We'd love to help you make your move.