Congratulations! You have finally made the decision to take the step and buy real estate. Whether this is your first purchase or 15th, for your primary residence, vacation home, or investment real estate, there are steps you need to go through to ensure the process is a smooth one.
- The first step is to get pre-approved by a lender for a loan. This can be directly from a bank you do business with or through a mortgage broker. This is the most important step to take. Once you are pre-approved, you will know how much house or building you can afford or better yet, how much of a house or building you feel comfortable with. The lender or mortgage broker will give you an idea of what your monthly costs will be and will give you a Good Faith Estimate of closing costs to let you know how much money you will need to bring to the closing table to finalize your purchase.
- Know what you are looking for. Once you are pre-approved, decide what your ideal neighborhood, home, or investment property would be. Are schools important or is it more important that you be close to work? Determine what the “must haves” are. These are the specifics of the property or neighborhood that you are not willing to give up but would be willing to sacrifice a “nice, but not necessary” for. This could be an extra bedroom, pool, specific school district, waterfront criteria etc. Knowing what you are looking for both in a neighborhood and home or investment property is extremely important as it will help keep you focused. Once you narrow down your wants, you will realize you don’t have to look at everything on the market, only those specific properties that meet your criteria.
- Work with a Realtor! I know that sounds like something I would say since I am one but, whether you work with me or another Realtor, a knowledgeable Realtor really will be able to make the process easier. This is my career and I specialize in getting the information you need all in one place. Even if you are a master websurfer, I can help you by giving a one-stop shop for answers, resources and information you will need to make your buying decision. I will even create your own website for you so you can surf the MLS instead of having to go to every real estate site on the web.