First-time homebuyers often find the home buying experience to be exhilarating and nerve-wracking. The learning curve is almost always steep. That said, by doing some due diligence, you may be able to avoid many minefields. If you came here looking for top tips for first time home buyers on how to make your home purchase a breeze, you’ve reached the right place. So, buckle up and enjoy the read!
Tip #1: Hire a professional real estate agent.
Finding a dream property isn’t as easy as a walk to the park. It requires skills and experience. And that’s where a real estate agent comes in. As Uptown Dallas Properties explains, a professional real estate agent understands the local real estate market dynamics and can use this knowledge to help you find the best deal.
But, how exactly do you find the right one for your needs? Simple, by asking the right questions. For example:
– What is your competitive advantage? In other words, what makes them better than the next agent.
– How will you negotiate on our behalf? Hire one that demonstrates strong negotiating skills.
– Do you have reviews and contact information from past clients? Online platforms like Facebook can help you in this regard.
– Who is on your real estate team? Here, you want to find out who the real estate agent works with and why.
– How many clients have you helped? This is an even better question than asking the agent how much experience they have. Why? They may be in the business for 9 years and have helped only 4 clients. While some may have been in business for only a couple of years but have helped dozens of clients.
— Is real estate a full-time job for you? Look for someone that is going to give you a full-time effort.
Tip #2: Start the hunting process.
The home buying process can be both stressful and emotionally draining. To find the right home, you need to do your homework first.
First and foremost, start by seeing as many homes as possible. Ideally, set a goal of seeing at least three a day. Next, look up the tax laws. These vary state by state and even by county. Finally, check your budget and determine which home perfectly fits it.
Tip #3: Seek pre-approval.
Sure, it’s not always necessary to have a mortgage broker in your back pocket. That said, getting pre-approved will help you know what budget to set for your new home.
The following are a couple of tips to help you get pre-approved by a preferred mortgage lender.
– Understand the loan options available. Some people might prefer the predictability of a fixed-rate loan, while others might like the lower initial payments of an adjustable-rate loan.
– Use a mortgage calculator to calculate how much loan you can afford.
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Your total monthly payment
– Make sure you are creditworthy. It goes without saying that a good credit score is important to land a good deal on the loan.
– Start putting away adequate money for your down payment. Depending on the loan type and your lender, the required down payment can be as little as 2.25% to as high as 20%.
Tip #4: Negotiate the offer.
Buying a house is all about mastering the art of give-and-take. The following are a few things you can negotiate on when buying a home.
– House price or mortgage points. Ask for a lower price based on things like home condition, neighborhood status, appraisal resorts, comparable properties, and the overall market.
– Cosmetic updates, furnishings, and household items. As a buyer, you can pretty much negotiate anything, like appliances, cars, minor landscaping, fixtures, and furniture.
– Flexibility on closing or possession dates. As a buyer, you can also negotiate about flexibility regarding closing or possession dates. Don’t assume it’s your problem to figure it out.
– All or a percentage of closing costs to be paid. Of course, this is the primary thing that you can successfully negotiate. Closing costs usually catch first-time buyers off guard since they don’t realize they will need extra cash to complete the transaction.
Tip #5: Always hire professional home inspection services.
Some states require it as a contract contingency while others don’t. A home inspector helps check the condition of a building by looking at things like the roof, basement, heating system, water heater, air-conditioning system, plumbing, and electrical system.
A professional home inspection process will give you a peace of mind knowing that you are making an informed decision.
And just as you would hire a real estate agent, also make sure to interview a couple of home inspectors.
Buying a home is a big deal. In fact, for an American, buying a home is one of the most important financial transactions they will experience. As such, it only makes sense to do it right the first time.
So hopefully, these top tips for first time home buyers will make it easier and less stressful for you when you do decide to take that leap.
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- Check out our Top Tips for First Time Home Buyers