As a first time home buyer, you might be experiencing some trepidation while searching for houses for sale. Buying your first home should be approached with both caution and confidence. Here are some tips to help you on your path.
Get your finances in order
Order your credit reports and make certain you don’t have unpaid accounts or errors that might trip up your mortgage application. Save up some money before searching houses for sale for a down payment, closing costs, repairs and upgrades and you won’t be caught by surprise down the road.
Get pre-approved for a mortgage
Getting pre-qualified is helpful but pre-approval is better for two reasons. First, it shows potential home sellers that you and your lending institution are serious about a home purchase. No seller wants a contract to fall through due to lack of financing. Two, it gives you a good idea of what house price you should be looking for and sets limits on your search. But remember a pre-approved mortgage amount is a limit not a goal.
Buy with your brain
It is easy to fall in love with a home and buy it without thinking about the hidden costs. Keep your emotions in check and remember that a home is a place to live. Don’t become so obsessed by one home that you ignore the potential problems it may have. Also, if the recent real estate market has taught us anything, it is not safe to think of your home as a financial investment.
Think about the future
Is there enough room for kids? Is the home in a good school district? Is there room for an addition? Is the neighbourhood safe? Does the house price match that of other homes in the neighbourhood? Every home buyer will one day be a home seller. Even if these questions aren’t important to you they probably will be for the next owner. Buy a home that won’t be difficult to sell when the time comes.
Give it time
In a buyer’s market things may move fast for you. In a seller’s market your search may drag on for months. Realize that finding a home is a process not a single event and plan yourself plenty of time to find the right home for you.