Buying your first home can be a dream come true, but the process is not always easy and stress-free. Being prepared and understanding the process can make buying your first house a lot easier. If you're a first time home buyer or will be one soon, use the following tips:
Make Sure You Are Pre-Approved
Before contacting a real estate agent or viewing any homes that you're interested in, it is very important to get pre-approved for a mortgage. If you have an established relationship with a bank, you may want to start by getting pre-approved with them first. Another option is to work with a mortgage broker who can help you find a lender that offers you the best terms. Getting pre-approved for a mortgage requires a lot of documentation-- you'll likely need to submit tax returns, bank statements, and other documents that show your assets. Your credit report will also be pulled. If you're approved, you will find out exactly how much a lender is willing to loan you, and at what interest rate.
Don't confuse getting pre-approved for a mortgage with getting pre-qualified. When you're pre-approved you have a guarantee that a lender will loan you money. Being pre-qualified only means that a lender thinks that you're a good candidate or a mortgage loan, but there is no official offer of a loan.
Work with a Buyer's Agent
If you're new to home buying, it is in your best interest to work with a real estate agent who specializes in serving as a buyer's agent. This type of real estate agent will have a lot of experience assisting buyers and will know the ins and outs of purchasing a home. Don't be afraid to meet with several real estate agents before committing to one-- it is very important that you feel comfortable with your real estate agent and can trust his or her advice.
Make a List of Wants and Needs
Few first time buyers have the budget to purchase their absolute dream home. When buying your first house, you may have to make some compromises in terms of features and amenities. It can be very helpful to make a list of things that you must have in a home, as well as a list of things you would like to have. For example, if you have children in school you may need to buy a home in a certain neighborhood so they can remain in the school's boundaries. On the other hand, you may want a house with a pool, but it is not essential. For more information about real estate, visit EXIT Lakes Realty Premier.