Buying your first home is a big decision. Property is one of the most important investments you will ever make. Researching information and tips for first-time homebuyers can be exhausting, but having valuable information about the process can protect you[.1] . These tips will help you navigate the purchasing process, save money, and avoid common mistakes.
- Look for a home before applying for a mortgage. Many first-time buyers make the mistake of viewing homes before meeting with a mortgage lender, but this may cause you to fall in love with a home that is unattainable. We advise you to get a fully underwritten preapproval before you fall in love with that gorgeous dream house you’ve been eyeing. According to Money Under 30, you must consider your monthly income; financial obligations, such as any other loans or credit card debt you may have; your credit score; and, most importantly, your overall budget for the home when determining how much you can spend on a new home.
- After finding a house that meets your conditions, consult multiple lenders. Shopping around allows you to review your options, preventing you from agreeing to potentially unfavorable terms. Be sure to compare rates, lender fees, and loan terms!
- Rushing the purchasing process can cost you later on. One common mistake for first-time buyers is failing to plan far enough ahead. While some people might think rushing the process can save money, this is not true. Instead, map out your home-buying timeline at least a year in advance. Remember, it might take months or even years to repair poor credit and pay down your total debt. Before signing the contract with your lender, work on boosting your credit score and paying down debt; doing so will put you in a stronger position for preapproval.
- Last but not least, do a home inspection. In some states, home inspections are conducted before the buyers make a purchase offer. In others, home inspections are a contract contingency. What does this mean for you? To put it simply, this means a buyer has the right to cancel the contract if existing damage to the home is found.[.2] No one wants to be locked into buying a home with a faulty foundation. Sellers are not responsible for making repairs if problems are discovered during a home inspection unless otherwise stated in the contract.[.3] Home inspections provide important information for potential buyers.
Buying a home for the first time can be daunting. The realtors at Cal Realty can help you find the perfect San Diego home by making the purchasing process less overwhelming. By being patient and keeping the steps above in mind, you’ll find your new home in no time!