Nothing brings a sense of pride and accomplishment like buying a new house. Unfortunately, what you don’t know about the home buying process can cause stress to dampen the excitement of this major life event. Don’t let this happen to you. Check out these 6 steps to buying a house and prepare yourself for the adventure ahead of you.
Step One – Save Money
Securing a home mortgage is a necessary step for most people when it comes to purchasing a home. Even with that help, you will need money on hand for a down payment, closing costs, and moving expenses. It’s better to save money more than you think you’ll need rather than come up short and cause a delay. The down payment is usually around 20 percent of the selling price. Expect closing costs to run between 2-8 percent of the price. Moving expenses will vary depending on the distance and size of the move.
Step Two – Check Your Credit
The home mortgage lender will check your credit report to judge your credit worthiness. It’s a good idea to prepare ahead by getting copies of your credit report. The three main reporting agencies are Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion. Once a year, you can request a free report from each of these agencies due to the Fair Credit Reporting Act. Look for errors and delinquent accounts. Report errors to the agencies and pay off any outstanding debts. Don’t wait for a lender to bring these things to your attention. If you do, you could further delay your home purchase.
Step Three – Find a Real Estate Agent
Even with all the information at your fingertips due to today’s technology, there are still many things you don’t know about the home buying process. A professional real estate agent has the experience and knowledge you need to have a successful transaction. They have strong negotiation skills to help you during the offer stage. They take care of the paperwork and make sure everything proceeds smoothly through the closing. Conduct an interview to make sure they meet your expectations.
Step Four – Get Pre-Approved for a Loan
There’s nothing quite as frustrating as finding the perfect home only to learn that it’s completely outside of your price range. You can avoid this by applying for a pre-approval on a home mortgage loan. Once you receive the pre-approval, you will have a clear idea of your target price range. This will save you time and frustration, and it lets sellers know that you are serious about purchasing a home.
Step Five – Create a List
Knowing what you need in a home is an important part of the search process. Create a list of must-have criteria that will save you time. Note the type of location you prefer, what style house appeals to you, and any amenities that are important. Highlight the items that are non-negotiable. It’s rare to find a home that will hit everything on your wish list, so it’s best to know which items are negotiable. Share this list with your real estate agent. The list will help them choose the best homes for you to tour. This saves you time!
Step Six – Make an Offer
Once you find the home of your dreams, it’s time to place the offer. Your real estate agent will give you valuable advice on creating an offer that looks attractive to the seller. Keep in mind that your offer may come up against competition. Don’t let this cause unnecessary stress. Trust your real estate agent to negotiate on your behalf. Once the offer is accepted, you will move into the inspection and appraisal phase. Soon, you’ll be sitting at the closing table and receiving the keys to your new home.
The best source of information about local communities and real estate topics is your real estate agent. Give Tim Burroughs a call today at 208-409-7653 to learn more about the area, discuss selling your house, or tour available homes for sale.