(Closed) First time home-buyers. Where do we start?

posted 7 years ago in Home
Post # 3
Member
2114 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: November 2012

get a home inspection  and buy with your pocket book & brain – your heart needs to take a back seat sometimes.. good luck !! it will be a very exciting time for both of you

Post # 4
Member
126 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: May 2010

Narrow down your price range. Take a look at your monthly budget, figure out how much per month you’re comfortable allocating to housing, then subtract $100-$200/month for home maintenance type things (expenses that you probably didn’t incur if you were renting prior to this), then take your monthly payment and figure out your price range for houses (make sure you take into account property taxes, homeowner’s insurance, any HOA fees, PMI if you’re making less than 20% downpayment).

After you narrow down your price range, narrow down your location preference. Research those areas in detail, drive through those neighborhoods. Don’t settle on location, this is the number one rule for real estate for a reason.

After you have both of these down, contact a realtor and start looking at houses!

Post # 5
Member
5977 posts
Bee Keeper

Each of you should determinte the one thing that you can’t live without. For my husband, it was a basement. For me, it was a big kitchen with lots of counter and cabinet space.

Make sure you have your maximum budget set before you go looking. You don’t want to find a house that is way out of your price range and fall in love with it! Talk with a financial advisor now so that you can make sure you can afford the houses you’re looking at.

Pick a few styles of homes you like. Do you like cap cod houses, colonials, bungalos…choosing a style and sticking with it can help you to narrow down what you’re looking for.

Post # 6
Member
6572 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: February 2010

We’re trying to buy a house now, and here’s what we did. First we discussed what is important to us (big fenced in yard, 2 car garage, 3 bed, 2 bath, good location, etc.) Then we looked online at houses to narrow down the search. We drove by the houses that we thought we liked which narrowed down what we liked even more b/c it was easy to tell what we didn’t like in person, like if they had a small back yard. Once we found one we liked, we called our realtor and asked to go see it.

Post # 7
Member
2116 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: June 2011

Be prepared for let downs- don’t let your eyes get bigger than your wallet- remember to include yearly taxes/assessments/how much heat you’ll need/etc- get second opinions/use your head if something is fishy. in your budget!

 

Kingy and I are first time home buyers too, been looking for maybe 2 months (one month from out of the country though).. we’ve gotten all the way to the end with a house and found litigation up to 5 mill against the condo association and had to start over. it was really sad, but now we found a place that we LOVE, way better so hopefully this happened for a reason and things work out!

Post # 8
Member
4355 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

If you are getting a mortgage go to the bank and get a pre-approval. They will evaluate all your criteria and A- tell you if you will even qualify and B- how much they are willing to lend you. This will give you the best idea of a starting point price wise.

Post # 9
Member
1766 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: April 2011

A – Get Pre-approved

B – Find a good realtor to represent you as the buyers

We looked at a few houses before we did both and found that no seller was taking us seriously until we had A and B squared away.  Also, a good buyer’s agent will help you through the whole process.

Post # 10
Member
2373 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: July 2008

Personally, the very first thing I would do is find a lender to pre-approve you. This will give you your maximum budget. After you get pre-approved, decide how much you’re comfortable spending on mortgage, insurance, taxes, and utlities a month (trash, water, etc).

 That’s a good starting point.

 Next I would look ok trulia.com at homes in your price range just to see what’s out there. Our realtors were great, but they let their taste dictate what they showed us. We ended up buying a property I found through a website. You may even be able to find a great realtor on trulia.com (they have message boards that realtors stalk).

Post # 11
Member
150 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: November 2011

i realize times have changed some since i bought my place, but whatever amount you get pre-approved for is NOT what you can afford.  i was pre-approved for an ungodly large sum of money that i KNOW i never would have been able to afford.  only you know how much money you are comfortable spending each month.

Post # 12
Member
500 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2011

First thing – get pre-approved.  Not pre -qualified.  You need to know exactly how much you can spend.  And as querty1 said – know what your payments would be within your approval amount – maybe you do want to max out that approval, but more than likely you won’t. 

 

Post # 13
Member
1766 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: April 2011

@qwerty1: Agreed.  The pre-approval tells you the maximum amount you can get a loan for.  But you shouldn’t go that high. Don’t forget to factor in taxes and utilities.

Post # 14
Member
2216 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: August 2012

1) Set a budget 2) Get pre-approved 3) Find a good realtor – ask friends and family for recommendatinos (don’t be afraid to fire your realtor if things don’t work out) 4) Decide on your “must-have” list and your “nice to have” list. 5) Start looking through the MLS listings to get a better idea of what you can afford  6) Schedule walk throughs with your realtor 7) Keep looking and don’t get discouraged 8) Be prepared to walk away if something goes wrong – with it being a buyers market, something else will come along

 

Gooooooood luck!  Buying your first home is both exciting and extremely stressful!

Post # 15
Member
921 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2011

I would get a pre-approval done to start with so you know what your price range is.

Then I would make a list of the things you want in a house (bedrooms, garage or whatever). Start looking at different neighbourhoods online and different houses until you get an idea of what both of you like. Then get a real estate agent.

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