Buying your first house is a big step—it’s one of the largest investments you’ll ever make and an exciting opportunity to plan for your future. However, it can be daunting because it’s such a major investment and involved process that includes everything from finding a real estate agent to determining the closing costs. But, if you know what to expect and how to prepare, you’ll be able to handle the process with ease.
A Guide for First-Time Homebuyers
What to Keep in Mind
Real estate agents will typically say that buying a house makes financial sense if you plan to stay in it for at least three to five years. When looking, keep your future goals and expectations in mind. For example, if you’re planning to have children, you’ll need extra bedrooms. If you have children, consider school district ratings and how far the school is from your home. If you’re handy, you may want to buy a fixer-upper and save money by upgrading the home yourself.
How to Prepare
Before shopping for homes, make a list of what you need and want in a house. Determine whether you have any dealbreakers. Next, decide whether you are financially ready for this major purchase. Meeting with a financial advisor and mortgage lender will help you make a plan for your finances. Calculate what you can afford for a monthly mortgage payment; generally, around 30% of your gross monthly income should be spent on housing costs. Don’t forget to factor in homeowners insurance, property taxes, and other costs. Make sure you have money saved up for a down payment. Get pre-approved for a loan, so you know what kind of home you can afford. Having a pre-approval letter will also make your offer more attractive to sellers when you do find your dream home. Once your finances are in order, meet with real estate agents to discuss your goals. They’ll know the local area well and will find real estate listings that fit your needs and budget.
When you’re looking for your first home, contact the real estate agents at Extreme Realty. They have a wealth of experience in both the real estate purchase process and the Bronx, Manhattan, and Westchester County communities. They provide access to a wide range of resources and market tools to help you find your dream home with ease. Start looking at properties on their website or call (718) 600-8890 to schedule a consultation with a real estate broker.