in

5 Tips All First Time Home Buyers Should Know

House for sale in Washington DC

Buying a home is never an easy process, especially when you’re doing it for the first time. After all, there is almost no purchase as important as a home, and most people want to make sure they’re making the best decisions. Unfortunately; however, people don’t always know what the ‘best decisions’ are, and they often don’t know where to turn to educate themselves. But for all of the first time home buyers out there, there is some good news. While looking for first home may seem like a never-ending task, there are some things you can do to ease the process. After all, purchasing your dream home shouldn’t be a nightmare. Here are five tips all first time home buyers should know.

Make sure you’re pre-approved

Getting pre-approved can not only help you, but it can also help your agents find homes for you to see. According to New York Daily News, “Getting pre-approved at the very beginning of the process is key. You’ll be certain as to how much you can afford, if there are any concerns with your financial picture and/or credit you have time to address them, and if/when you find a home you love you’ll be ready to go and not have to scramble.”

Make at least 20 to 30 visits before choosing a home

Visiting properties is key when purchasing a home, especially for the first time. As you probably already know, pictures don’t always do things justice, and there are certain things that you have to see for yourself. However, many first time home buyers make the mistake of not looking at nearly enough places before deciding on the home they want to purchase. While touring different homes may seem a little tedious after a while, real estate professionals recommend looking at between 20-30 homes before making an offer.

Get a real estate agent

While the friends, family, and the Internet can be great resources, nothing compares to having a real estate agent. Although you make think you know exactly what you want, an agent can help educate you on things you haven’t even thought about. Plus, telling your agents everything you want and need in a home can also help them come up with a better selection of homes to show you.

Stay within your budget

Everyone has a budget when looking for a home, but some people don’t understand the true importance of staying within it. The New York Daily News states, “In determining your budget, focus on two key metrics and understand how they work together to impact your budget — your liquid assets and the total monthly housing payment you can afford to carry.” Once you have these numbers figured out, you’ll have a better understanding of what you can truly afford, and you’ll feel more confident when you make an offer.

Research comparable properties

While all homes have an asking price, researching comparable properties in similar areas may give you something to base your offer off of. Having this information can also help you determine whether the asking price is fair.

(Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

Written by Camille Moore

Camille has a master's degree from Saint Joseph University's Writing Studies program. Her writing has been published on several websites, and she enjoys writing articles and short stories in her spare time. You can follow Camille on Twitter @CamealAshley.