So…you’ve decided you’re ready to buy a house. Congrats! First step is getting online and finding the perfect place, right?! Wrong! Buying a house is one of the biggest financial investments you’ll make, so we have to make sure you’re prepped and ready.
Step One: Figure out how much you can afford; it’s so important to talk to a lender and understand everything that goes into a real estate purchase. The three main parts? Down payment, closing costs and monthly mortgage payment – making sure you understand and are comfortable with all of these numbers is a must before you start looking, otherwise you run the risk of either falling in love with something out of your price range, or looking at properties that are under budget and being disappointed for no good reason. Another big tip – make sure your credit is in check, and don’t make any huge purchases while you’re on the hunt for a new place, it could make or break the deal.
Step Two: Find your Realtor (if you don’t already have one that you have successfully used before). Don’t rush into this; interview agents, make sure you have aligned morals, and if you don’t feel comfortable, don’t be afraid to walk away (before you sign an agreement). If you need recommendations for a lender, ask your Realtor – they can recommend lenders they’ve used before and trust (see Myth #3 for more on this).
Step Three: Identify your wants and needs, and share them with your agent. Think realistically about these lists; if you need help, your agent can talk you through it.
Step Four: LET THE HOUSE HUNTING BEGIN!