Buying a home for the first time can be an overwhelming process. Not only is this probably the largest purchase you’ve ever made, you also want your decision to be a good one. Hopefully, these home buyer tips will help you move forward in your dream of home ownership.
1. Understand the costs associated with buying a home. It’s easy to think that buying a home is as simple as having a down payment saved and getting approved for a mortgage. However, there are costs that many first time home buyers don’t consider. There are a number of fees involved throughout the process, such as closing costs, inspections, appraisals, taxes, etc. Some of these costs will be able to be rolled up in the loan amount but not all. A professional Realtor will be able to give you a good faith estimate about all the costs involved.
2. Save for a down payment. A typical FHA loan, which is the loan most first time home buyers get, will require a minimum of 3.5% of the purchase price as a down payment. However, there are many benefits to having a larger down payment ready. The more you can afford to put down, the better your offer will look to sellers. You will also pay your lender less interest over the lifetime of the loan. If you have 20% to put down, you will be able to waive the home insurance your lender will otherwise require.
3. Get pre-approved for a loan. Go through the pre-approval (not pre-qualification) process before even looking at homes. By getting pre-approved you will have a good idea of your price-range and it will allow you to make an offer quickly should you find the perfect home.
4. Visit multiple lenders. You’ve already gotten together all the documents and information needed to get approved for a home loan, so why not visit a few lenders and get the best deal possible? Visiting multiple lenders can save you hundreds of dollars per month on your loan!
5. Know what you want. We suggest taking the time to sit down and make a list of your must-haves and wants before you start searching. Some factors to consider are what areas you’d like to live in, how much room you need, how much yard do you want, etc.
6. Choose the right agent. Buying a house for the first time is a big decision – speak to a few agents before deciding who you want to represent you. It’s important to find someone you connect with and trust. As a buyer, you want a Realtor who will represent your best interests throughout the entire process.
7. Get a good home inspector. Home inspections are an important part of the buying process. Your Realtor will be able to recommend a few good inspectors. A thorough home inspection may bring to light items that need repair. Not only can this be used to your advantage when negotiating to get you the best possible price, it will also help you avoid buying a home that has problems you are not ready to take on.
Lambros ERA has many reputable, professional agents to help you navigate this process:
Lambros ERA Real Estate
3011 American Way | Missoula, MT 59808
406.532.9200 | 888.735.SOLD (7653)