Monday, April 18, 2011

Five Essentials Home Buyers Should Know When They’re In the Market for a New Home

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With all this talk of the real estate market being down and homes sitting on the market for months and months, it’s no wonder that this is a buyer’s market. So if you and your family are considering moving into a bigger, better home or if this is finally the right time for you to step up to the plate and get into your first home, then you should know the essentials.

Keep Your Eye On the Bucks

Homebuyers these days have a lot of temptations to contend with. Since there are so many homes on the market and relatively fewer buyers, the choices are myriad but then that leaves another problem that must be dealt with – keeping within their means. It can be so tempting to want ‘more house’ when touring all the neighborhood homes you imagine living in, but unless you’re careful, you run the risk of significant consequences later on. If you’re not careful, going outside your budget can mean monthly payments that are too high to handle.

Step 1: Make a budget and stick to it.

Save Now, Relax Later - Everyone knows that buying a home entails putting down a significant amount as a down payment, up front. This is often the largest sum of money that most people have to come up with and also part with, in their lives. One of the best ways to manage this sizable expense is to save it up as you lead up to the purchase of your new home and enjoy smaller payments based on the amount of down payment you are able to secure. The more of the up to 20% of your home’s price that you can, the better.

Step 2: Better to be safe, than sorry – by saving.

Strengthen That Credibility - Gone are the days when you can just walk into a lender’s office or log online and get an instant loan approval. Now, more than ever, your credit profile is essential in yielding the best rates, under the solid most of terms and in the most hassle free process possible. The better your credit score, the easier it will be for you to be taken seriously as a homebuyer.

Step 3: Pay attention to your financial reputation.

Secure Those Funds - Advance approval on the funds to purchase your home will give you a wide range of opportunities as a buyer. Imagine knowing in advance exactly what you have to work with, where your bargaining power lies and how much leeway you can give or take when negotiating a closing. By securing preapproved loans by mortgage loan officers or lenders, you are taking away the hassle of the unknown when bidding on a new home.

Step 4: Lay solid financial groundwork before you begin.

Rely On Your Realtor - Even though most people realize the value of having a trusted Realtor in your corner, walking you through each of the steps of the home buying process, there are some who feel circumventing this step is beneficial. The truth is that when a professional Realtor who has experience dealing with all the ins and outs of the real estate business is on your team, you can focus on the less arduous tasks of the process while relying on your Realtor for the technical stuff.

Step 5: Don’t sweat the technical stuff; find the home you love and let your Realtor make it happen.

It doesn’t take much other than buyer-savvy to realize the best home buying experience. With these five key steps, the buying process will undoubtedly be a smoother one, making the entire process an enjoyable one for you and your family!