Buying your 1st Home: Getting Started
So, you've decided you're ready to take the plunge and buy your first home. Congratulations! Homeownership is a big accomplishment. But it's also a big responsibility. Before you start house hunting, there are a few things you should know about the process of buying a home.
1. Know how much you can afford
The first step in buying a home is finding out how much you can comfortably afford to pay. This includes what you have available for a down payment and what you are comfortable with for mortgage payments. It's important to be realistic when estimating how much you can afford, as you don't want to find yourself in a situation where you're struggling to make your mortgage payments each month.
2. Get pre-approved for a mortgage
Once you know how much you can afford, the next step is getting pre-approved for a mortgage loan. This essentially means that a lender has looked at your financial information and is willing to give you a loan for a certain amount of money. Getting pre-approved for a loan will make the homebuying process go more smoothly as it will give sellers confidence that you're a serious buyer who is able to obtain financing. It is best to shop a few lenders for a pre-approval on the same day to compare allowing you to choose which suits you best. We can connect you with our trusted and preferred lenders to help you get started.
3. Have realistic expectations
It's important to have realistic expectations when buying a home, especially if it's your first time going through the process. Be prepared to compromise on some things in order to get what's most important to you in a home. You might have to settle for a fixer-upper instead of a brand new home, or live in a different location than you originally wanted.
4. Understand all the costs involved
When budgeting for your new home, don't just consider the purchase price—there are other costs involved in homeownership that you'll need to factor in as well. These include things like monthly mortgage payments, property taxes, insurance, repairs and maintenance, and utilities.
5. Be prepared for surprises
Even if you've done everything right and have followed all the steps involved in buying a home, there's always the possibility that challenges may pop up along the way. Surprises are inevitable when purchasing a property, so it's important to stay flexible and be prepared for anything that might come up. This is a great time to lean on your real estate agent and their expertise for guidance.
Buying your first home is an exciting time! But it's also important to do your research and understand all that goes into becoming a homeowner before taking the leap. Keep these five things in mind when starting the process and you'll be on track to making your dream of homeownership come true!