When buying a new home the task can seem daunting. Here is a quick breakdown of how to get started.
1. Talk to a Mortgage Broker
Before you even start looking at houses it is important to talk to a mortgage broker. When you talk to a mortgage broker, they inform you of all your options. Also, they make sure what you think you can afford is the same as what you will be pre-approved for. A mortgage broker will show a variety of loan types and will help you find the one that fits your needs specifically. For example, groups like Flagship Financial specialize in VA loans for our men and women who have served in the military. Many veterans don’t even know of these specialized loans that can get them approved for more because of their lower interest rates. This is why it is so important to talk to a mortgage broker first. This will save you a lot of time and disappointment looking at houses that don’t fit your loans criteria.
2. Talk to a Real Estate Agent
It is important to find a real estate agent that understands you and your needs. Also, it is extremely important to find one that has experience in finding homes that will match your loan criteria. As a buyer, you very rarely have to pay for a real estate agent. Typically it is the seller that pays the real estate agent fees. This is why, especially for first-time buyers, a real estate agent is definitely worth having.
3. Start Looking at Houses
Attending open houses and actually walking through what might be your future home is an exciting step. Your real estate agent will be able to find homes that work for you and your loan. The reason you don’t want to start here, as I mentioned before, is because walking through your dream home just to find out you won’t be approved is heartbreaking. However, walking through your dream home knowing you have already taken the proper steps is thrilling.
4. Make an Offer
You have found the one! The next step is to make an offer. You want to make sure the seller is serious before you start putting money into things like an inspection, etc. At this time you will be really glad you have a real estate agent guiding you. They can make sure your offer covers all the basics, including any contingencies regarding the inspection.
5. Inspection and Counter Offers
This is where the real negotiating begins. Now that you are fully informed on the condition of the house, it is time to make a deal. Once you make and close the deal its time to start packing!