If you’re looking at houses and considering buying a new property, you’ve reached a significant milestone in life. House hunting is a part of life that will make anyone feel extra mature and special, no matter how old or young they are.
Buying a house is exciting, but it can also be quite intimidating. You’re working with large numbers with properties well into the hundreds of thousands of dollars. It’s imperative that you spend the time researching and deciding which property is best for you.
To help you out, we created your ultimate guide to buying a house.
Go Through Your Finances
Before you even begin looking, you need to sit down and go through your finances. Take a look at all of your debt and what you make in a month. Isyou debt-to-income quite high, or do you have almost no debt at all?
As you go through your finances, it should help give you an idea as to what you can and cannot afford. Determine an estimated budget to help you pick out properties that are not too expensive.
Get Pre-Approved on a Mortgage
There’s one more step you should take before you start looking at houses, and that is to get pre-approved for a mortgage. There is no sense in looking at properties if you don’t know yet if you have a mortgage.
Shop around to find the best lender who will offer you a mortgage suitable for your situation, and at the best price. Many mortgage options exist, so don’t necessarily agree to the first one you hear.
Come Up With a List of Must-Have Features
Once you start picking out properties to look at, it can get overwhelming very quickly. You may find that you want all of these things in a house, but the price tag with it far exceeds your budget.
Sit down and go through all the features you want. Put them into three categories: must-have, would like to have, and can live without. Your must-have features should be of top priority when you’re determining which properties to look at.
Start House Hunting
Once you have a list of homes to visit, it’s time to start the house hunting process. Have a realtor take you to every property on your list. Go through all of the rooms, as the realtor as many questions as possible, and make sure you leave the house knowing as much as you can about the property.
As you visit each house, you’ll be able to start narrowing down your list. What you thought you would like may not be true once you see it. You may find you have to shuffle around your must-have list at this point.
Research the Neighborhood
If you found the perfect home that you want to live in, spend some time researching the neighborhood. What are the amenities around? What does the property taxes look like, and the average price on the houses around? Don’t take too long though as you could miss out on putting in an offer.
Put in an Offer
One of the most nerve-wracking parts about purchasing a property is when you put in an offer. You need to decide on a price that fits your budget, but something that will also be appealing to the seller.