Buying a house can feel very overwhelming. If you break down the basic steps, though, you can get through the process without losing track of your goals. Below are the basic things you need to keep in mind when buying a house. If you can check them all off of your list, you will know that you’ve covered all your bases.
Get A Good Realtor
Having a solid real estate agent is the first thing you’ll need when buying a house. While your realtor is going to get paid for helping you buy a house, it’s always in his or her best interest to make sure that you are protected during the process. A good realtor will show you the right houses for your needs and help to walk you through the buying process.
Know Your Limits
It’s important to know what you can afford. When you go to a mortgage lender, they’re going to tell you much you can borrow – but that might be more than you want to spend on a house. Instead, do some research to figure out what kind of payments you can comfortably make while living the lifestyle that’s most important to you and to your family.
Get a Pre-Approved and Ready for a Mortgage
The last thing you want is to lose out on a great house because you couldn’t pull funding together at the last minute. Go ahead and start talking to lenders before you’ve bought a home to get pre-approved for a mortgage. While there will still be paperwork to do after you sign a contract, you’ll be able to avoid some worst-case scenarios with pre-approval. Don’t forget to get your down payment together during this step, as this significant amount of cash will be vital to the process of securing your loan.
Research Moving Companies
It’s a good idea to know what it’s going to cost you to move ahead of time. This is an easy cost to forget, so go ahead and take care of it ahead of time. You should also figure out whether or not you can actually reach your new home by truck, or if you’ll have to take a more exotic route to get your things to your home. Plus, some companies will give you a discount if you reserve a truck early enough, or if you bundle multiple services together (Suddath movers and a few others will do this).
Check Out the Neighborhood
Don’t forget to check out the neighborhood at different times of the day and night. You’ll get an idea of what life is like in the area, what your neighbors are like, and even what kind of traffic you should expect on your way home from work. These are the little things that have a huge impact on your quality of life in your new home.
Get an Inspection
Never move into a home without an inspection. Even if you’re buying a house as-is, you need to know what kind of flaws you’re going to be working with even if you know you have to do some renovations. Always make sure to work with an independent inspector even if the buyer offers to have an inspection done for you. This goes for pest control too. Make sure you’re not about to move into an infestation before you sign anything. Just make sure you go with pros, like our friends at Turner Pest, it’s easy to miss the early signs of an infestation. And missing the early signs could cost you thousands down the road.
All-in-all, it’s not rocket science. Be prepared, do your homework, and don’t cut corners. The more time you spend up front, the more at ease you’ll be throughout the entire process. So, get out there out start house hunting!