How to Buy Your First Home

You are so over with paying rent. Month after month you write a check, money that essentially is gone forever. If you were to own a home, that same money would be used toward building equity, what can provide a nest egg for your later years.

Not everyone can afford a new home and not everyone should own one. But if you’re ready to buy your first home, here’s what you should keep in mind.

1. Find a real estate agent. You can do the home buying process by yourself, but why should you? A professional real estate agent can assist you, an individual who will help you navigate the rigors of home buying. You won’t pay this person a commission — that cost will be charged to the seller.

2. Contact a mortgage company. How much home can you afford? That’s something a mortgage broker can help you determine. Moreover, that professional can also qualify you for a loan. Buyers who look for a home with their mortgage already approved stand a better chance of getting that house than the buyer who still needs to be qualified.

3. Begin your home search. What type of home do you want — colonial, ranch, condominium, townhouse or something else? Where do you want to live? What can you afford? These are questions only you and your spouse can answer. It is important that you limit your search to only those homes that interest you. Work with your real estate agent to find a home. Drive around neighborhoods, attend open houses and learn more about the communities that interest you.

4. Select your home. The home shopping process can take weeks or months, depending on your requirements. In some markets the process is drawn out because of limited inventory. In other markets home buying is quick because the market is expanding and inventories are on the rise. When you find a home that you like, present an offer to your agent who will discuss your offer with the seller’s agent. You may need to do some back and forth negotiating before you arrive at a figure that both parties are satisfied with. Once a price has been determined the two parties will draw up a contract.

5. Contact your attorney. You need legal representation when buying a home. That professional will review the contract, suggest changes and ensure that you are adequately supported from now through closing.

6. Assemble your paperwork. You need to collect important papers for your mortgage company, your attorney and for the seller. These documents include your salary information, recent tax forms, and documentation about the home. Your real estate agent can provide the particulars for you, including who gets what.

7. Contact your insurance agent. Notify your insurance company of your intent to buy a home. You will need to have a policy on hand before the closing date. Determine what level of coverage you will need and buy a policy.

8. Head to closing. With your paperwork in order, your financing set and your new home set for occupation, you are ready for closing. Meet with your agent and lawyer, the seller’s lawyer and make it happen. Obtain the home keys and you’re done.

Moving Considerations

Of course, there are other steps to take in the home buying process. For one, you will need to assemble the boxes and pack your goods on your side of the move. For another, you will need to work with a moving company to handle the move notes the Allied Moving Company. When you finish all the preliminaries you will then be able to complete the transition from renter to homeowner.