With myriad steps involved, the question of how to start buying a house might feel difficult to answer. Buying a home is one of the most significant purchases you’re likely to make, and you want to make sure you make the appropriate choices along the way.
To help make the process more manageable, it’s helpful to break the process down into simple steps. Here is a basic guide for getting started buying a house:
Get mortgage preapproval
Getting preapproved for a mortgage can benefit you in several ways. First, it helps you determine how much you can afford to borrow from a lender and spend on your new home. You can decide on a purchase price range based on down payment and interest rates. This can focus your home search and make you feel more confident in your decision.
Additionally, mortgage preapproval makes a good impression on sellers. Because your financials are examined carefully by a mortgage lender before getting preapproval, sellers know that you’re a qualified and motivated buyer.
Hire a real estate agent
While it’s possible to buy a house without a real estate agent, you don’t want to miss out on the knowledge and expertise an agent can provide. Real estate agents know the ins-and-outs of every real estate transaction and the local market.
Not only can a real estate agent find listings that match your criteria, they can coordinate and advise you on every step of the process. Your real estate agent can serve as your professional representation in negotiating with sellers and managing paperwork and logistics.
Start your home search
Work with your real estate agent to find listings that match your wants and needs. Begin with a list of priorities for your new home, such as price range, location and must-have features. While it’s important to keep an open mind in your search, a list of priorities can help you determine what you’re willing to compromise on.
If you intend to become a homeowner, keep these basic steps in mind before you begin your home buying process. The more prepared you are, the more comfortable and effective you’ll be in finding your dream home.