Purchasing a home for the first time is an exciting and scary endeavor. There are a few things you can do from the start that will benefit you as you begin your transition into home ownership.
In the initial stages, when you are just thinking about buying a home, take the first few months to understand your monthly spending habits. What is your debt to income ratio? Where do you spend the money that is left over after your bills are paid? Check your credit score and speak with a lender. Obtaining a pre-approval letter will give you an idea of the price range you should be searching. If you receive a pre-approval letter from a lender you are not obligated to use that lender for your eventual loan. Take your time and shop around. Seek second opinions. It is generally a good idea to use a local lender who has knowledge of the market you are looking in. Also you will have the added benefit of having someone close by who you can turn to for answers.
You will also want to find a trusted, knowledgeable agent that works with a well known,reliable company. It is important to feel comfortable with them as you will be spending a lot of time together throughout this process. They will work to find homes that meet your search parameters, price range and protect you from pitfalls that may come up.
After you know where you stand financially and have a professional realtor working on your behalf the fun can start. Touring homes and neighborhoods is exciting and solidifies that this is actually real and happening. Put some thought into what type of neighborhood you want to live in. Are you prepared to pay annual HOA’s fees and abide by the CC&R’S? Do you have an interest in looking at fixer uppers and putting in some sweat equity? What will the monthly electric bill and annual taxes be? Ask yourself questions and openly discuss your likes and dislikes with the agent.
For the answers to any questions you have regarding the purchase of a home please visit www.chaplinwilliams.com or call us at (904)261-9311