The following is a checklist to help walk you through the Buying process.
Meet with a mortgage broker and find out how much you can afford to pay for a home.
While knowing how much you can afford is the first step. You’ll also avoid being disappointed when going after homes that are out of your price range. With Pre-Approval, the buyer actually applies for a mortgage and receives a commitment in writing from a lender. This way, assuming the home you’re interested in is at or under the amount you are pre-qualified for, the seller knows immediately that you are a serious buyer for that property. Costs for pre-approval are generally nominal and lenders will usually permit you to pay them when you close your loan.
Focus & Organization :
In a convenient location, keep handy the items that will assist you in maximizing your home search efforts. Such items may include:
One or more detailed maps with your areas of interest highlighted.
A file of the properties that your agent has shown to you, along with ads you have cut out from the newspaper.
Paper and pen, for taking notes as you search.
Instant or video camera to help refresh your memory on individual properties, especially if you are attending a series of showings.
Location: Look at a potential property as if you are the seller. Would a prospective buyer find it attractive based on school district, crime rate, proximity to positive (shopping, parks, freeway access) and negative (abandoned properties, garbage dump, source of noise) features of the area?
List of Needs & Wants:
Make 2 lists, the first should include items you must have (i.e., the number of bedrooms you need for the size of your family). The second list is your wishes, things you would like to have (pool, den, etc.) but that are not absolutely necessary.
Representation by a Professional:
Consider hiring your own real estate agent, one who is working for you, the buyer, not the seller.
Instead of thinking with your heart when you find a home, think with your head. Does this home really meet your needs? There are many houses on the market, so don’t make a hurried decision that you may regret later.
Visualize with Your Decor:
Are the rooms laid out to fit your needs? Is there enough light?.
Be Thorough :
A few extra dollars well spent now may save you big expenses in the long run. Don’t forget such essentials as:
Include inspection & mortgage contingencies in your written offer.
Have the property inspected by a professional inspector.
Request a second walk-through to take place before closing.