For the first time home buyers you are going to learn amazing tips for buying a house while at the same time help you avoid the mistakes that so many first time home buyers go through. The home buying procedures can vary from state to state depending on local customs. Overall the entire home buying process is broken down into five basic steps.
Get an Agent
With online real estate sites all over the internet that allow you to browse through hundreds or even thousands of home listings you are probably wondering why you would need a real estate agent. Well one of the main reason is that you don’t need to know everything about buying or selling a house if you hire a real estate professional who does.
Another good reason is that you can save so much time because your agent will be doing the majority of the tedious leg work for you. A good agent will also find listings that are not yet listed on the market which can give you a head start on getting a property. My favorite reason for hiring a real estate agent is that generally they can spot an overpriced listing and advise you accordingly.
Search for the Right Home for You
Most home buyers start their research online sifting through hundreds of properties before they even step foot inside a house. It’s said that the average home buyer spends apporximately 6 to 8 weeks looking for a house before they finally decide on their dream home.
Buying a home can be an overwhelming process and emotionally draining. Finding the right home is not always an easy task. That’s why it’s recommended that you follow step 1 and employ the services of an agent.
Get Pre-approved for a Loan First
It’s better to get pre-approved for a loan from a lender before you buy a home. This will save you a lot of time and disappointment. You don’t want to find your dream home only to learn that you don’t qualify for a loan for that particular house. By getting approved for a loan you’ll have a better idea of how much home you can afford.
Many sellers won’t even bother wasting their time considering an offer if the buyer isn’t gauranteed to get financing for the house. One popular home buying loan for first time buyers is a FHA (Federal Housing Administration) loan because of the minimum down payment requirement is much less than a conventional mortgage. It’s a good idea to compare the different types of mortgages to see what works best for you. You can ask around or even your agent for referrals to good mortgage brokers.
Negotiate the Offer
Negotiate! Don’t just except the price of a house just because it is listed at a certain price, sellers can list their property for whatever they like but it doesn’t mean you have to except it. You can save yourself tens of thousands of dollars by negotiating.
Don’t get caught in the trap of comparing the price of what a house may have sold for to a house you are considering buying. Your agent can provide comparable sales and examine the pending sales. Comparable sales are similar type homes in the same condition and location that have sold within the past 3 months. You may need to pay over list price in a seller’s market, especially if there are lots of buyers bidding on the same house.
Do a Home Inspection
In some states, a home inspection is conducted before buyers make a purchase offer. In other states, a home inspection is a contract contingency. A contract contingency means a buyer has the right to cancel the contract. You might not want to be locked into buying a home that has a faulty foundation, for example.
While your realtor probably has a few inspectors that he or she can recommend, you should really find your own. An impartial, third-party home inspector won’t have any loyalty to your realtor and will be able to talk freely and frankly about potential issues and don’t be afraid to ask questions. Getting a house inspected doesn’t guarantee smooth sailing. You need to play an active role in the process.
A good home inspector should bring a camera with them. Ask your inspector to photograph any potential issues that arise so you can see the issue for yourself and make sure you fully understand the problem.
Sellers are generally not required to make repairs if problems are discovered during a home inspection but this knowledge adds leverage during the negotiating phase. Usually buyers will put a contingency on the sell based on getting certain things repaired.