House Hunting Tips

We all know the old line about location. But buying a home takes research, research, research, too. Below are some house hunting tips to help you throughout the home buying process.

You will want to determine:

  • How much home you can comfortably afford. The pre-approval process, which entails full documentation and credit check, is the best way to determine the numbers that are right for you. Early in your search, you can identify any potential hurdles and focus only on homes truly available to you.

  • How much cash you need to close. Knowing how much cash you'll need to close and, ideally, consolidating those funds into one account will help to prevent stress and ease the process later.

  • What kind of property you really want. Single family, multi-family, condo, co-op, Victorian, Colonial, Cape, split, ranch, cottage, cabin, teepee...home types and legal distinctions are plentiful. Whether you are open to several styles or have your heart set on only one, narrowing your search will save time and prepare you to act when the perfect home hits the market.

  • Where you want to be and how long you'll want to be there. You’ll want to strike a balance between buying what you can afford and buying what will accommodate your needs for longer than just the first few years. Assess your plans for growing your family and how your income might grow to match. Planning ahead is especially important in today’s market, when trading up tomorrow may mean both a more expensive home and a higher mortgage rate.

  • How the home buying process works. This is a time when the Internet doesn’t have all the answers. The process varies for many reasons, including area and custom. Generally, purchases include: Offer, Acceptance, Inspections, Contract, Loan Application, Appraisal, Title, Loan Approval, Closing/Funding and Moving In. Many little steps can fall in between, and the process won't always occur in a given order. It pays to speak with local experts early.

Purchasing a home is something most people do only a handful of times. We've seen how things can go wrong in the markets, but more often, we've also seen how very right they can be.

Your experience will never be completely within your control as there are broad market forces at play. Still, knowing as much as you can about the market, the process and the expected results will go a long way toward navigating your home purchase with confidence.

We're all about educating our clients. If you're ready to benefit from our knowledge and experience, we're ready to help. Reach out when you're ready, and we'll help you understand the nuances of your market today.