(Closed) Buying our first home…. don’t even know where to begin!

posted 7 years ago in Home
Post # 3
Member
7606 posts
Bumble Beekeeper

When we were looking (just last year!), the first thing we did was make lists!  Figure out what are your “musts” (number of bedrooms, garage, location, basement, storeys, whatever) and what are your “preferred” things.  This helped us by narrowing our search.  Also, if possible, go out with an agent a few times far before you’re even planning to buy.  We went months before we were actively looking and it helped us gain perspective and get ideas.  We bought our house this past summer and we love it!

Good luck and congrats, Hedgehogs!!

Post # 5
Member
7606 posts
Bumble Beekeeper

@Mrs Hedgehog:  That’s a great start, then!

Another thing we did: slowly drive around various neighbourhoods looking at houses like creepy weirdos, lol.  That’s both fun and educational!

Have you gotten pre-approved for a mortgage yet?  That will definitely help you define your search financially.

Post # 6
Member
3520 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: March 2012

Look online and drive around….it’s the ultimate window shopping!

Post # 9
Member
2584 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: June 2012

Have you actually toured any homes yet? Maybe start going to some open houses of places that look like they meet your requirements. Open houses are great for getting ideas and experience without making any kind of commitment. Plus, while you’re looking you might meet a realtor you’d really like to work with (unless you’re going without a realtor). And open houses are pretty fun too.

 

Post # 10
Member
2232 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

Juliepants gave you great info! I would look into getting pre-approved if you’re not already. Spend some time looking online to see what is available in the areas that you like and if it fits your price range. 

I will say though that sometimes first time buys get really carried away with what they want in a home or they get fixated on that first home being a forever home. This isn’t a problem if you have a budget that fits your wants and needs but most of the time that isn’t the case. 

Make sure whoever you pick as your realtor you like & you feel like they like you! You’ll be working closely together for a while!

This is a Canadian website but it’s still a great resource: http://www.howrealtorshelp.ca/buying.php

There are some charts/lists in the tools section of that website. 

Post # 12
Member
2584 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: June 2012

@Mrs Hedgehog:  Newspapers or online 🙂 Check either your local paper’s housing section or website and find some, they’re almost always on Sundays. Circle a couple you’d like to go to and just go. If you drive past a house you like and you can remember the realty company listed on the sign, you can go to that realtor’s website and they should have open houses listed too.

Post # 13
Member
2232 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

@galloway111: and if you come to my open houses I give out chocolate! 

@Mrs Hedgehog:  Obviously since I’m Canada this applies to here but it may be somewhat true in the US as well. Typically lenders are not to happy to give out mortgages when someone has just started working or just changed jobs. Usually they require 3 months at least of employment and a letter of employment.

Open houses are typically listed in local papers, on MLS or if you just drive around you should see signs!

Post # 14
Member
2584 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: June 2012

@Ms. Martian:  What!? My parents were considering buying recently (the only reason Iknow even a little bit about this, lol) and NOBODY gave out chocolate! You are automatically my future realtor 😉

Post # 15
Member
2232 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

@galloway111:  haha! Actually a lot of the Agent Open Houses that we do here have light refreshments to get the other agents to come by!

Post # 16
Member
3520 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: March 2012

At this point, then, look for a realtor who you like. Ask around, everyone knows one or can give you referrals. A good realtor will introduce you to a mortgage broker who will run your financials and find the best lender for you. He will then get you a pre approval letter and your realtor will take you to see things in your price range. It will help if you can show pictures of things that you like that are currently on the market.

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