Buying your first house is one of the most important steps you can take! Whether you’re buying a house young or older, the real estate process can be overwhelming for most people. Having a first time home buyer checklist is a helpful and organized way to ensure you don’t miss anything in your excitement. Pairing up with one of the leading Scottsdale AZ real estate agents the country will help you navigate the factors to consider when buying a house. This will guarantee that you make a purchase your whole family will love.
Important Factors to Consider When Buying a House
Going into the real estate process with a plan of action is the best way to a successful home buying purchase. To avoid any challenges and frustrations, we’ve put together a first time home buyer checklist for your convenience. With these factors to consider when buying a house, you’ll be on your way to the home of your dreams!
- Prepare – What is the fastest way to purchase a home? Preparation is the key to a smooth and quick home buying process. An important part of preparing to purchase your first home is saving money. Starting the savings process early is crucial to position yourself to purchase your dream home. The main costs to consider at the beginning of the real estate process including the down payment, closing costs, and move-in expenses. The down payment will be determined by the mortgage lender and mortgage you chose. With great credit, you may be able to put down as little 3% on a conventional loan. Using a mortgage calculator will help you estimate the amount you should save up.
Closing costs refer to expenses and fees paid when the mortgage is finalized. The amount typically falls between 2 – 5% of the mortgage amount but you can save on home inspections if you look around. Also, the seller may be willing to pay some of your closing costs so it never hurts to ask.Having enough cash on hand for move-in expenses will help you settle into your dream home faster. You’ll want to make sure you have savings ready to purchase furnishings, immediate home repairs, and any appliances if needed.Before you begin the exciting process of home buying, know how much home you can comfortably afford. A home affordability calculator can help you with this. It takes into consideration your income, current debts, credit rating, down payment, and potential home. You’ll want to track your credit score with all three credit bureaus including Transunion, Experian, and Equifax. Knowing and improving your credit score will put you in a better position to purchase your home at a great price. Paying bills on time, maintaining low credit balances, and disputing errors will help raise your credit score while lowering your interest rate. There are plenty of free credit score tracking tools like Credit Karma or NerdWallet.
- Agent – Partnering with one of the leading Scottsdale AZ real estate agents will guarantee you get the dream home you’ve always wanted. While hiring a top real estate agent is usually free, they can help you secure financing. They will also be able to negotiate a great deal for you and act as a trusted advisor throughout the process. Most importantly, you’ll want to find a local real estate agent that is familiar with the area you want to move to.
- Research – It’s important to know as much as you can about the local housing market you are interested in. Since this is one of the most expensive purchases you’ll make in your life, you’ll want to research how much homes are selling for in the area, how competitive the market is, and how far your money will go are just a few things you should consider. A rockstar agent will have this information readily available or direct you where to find it. Some things you’ll want to know about the market your interested in are:
- Current state of the market
- Buyer or seller’s market
- Absorption rate
- Property tax rates
- Mortgage – There are several mortgage options available depending on your credit and down payment eligibility. Some of the alternatives include:
- Conventional – not backed by the government
- FHA – insured by the Federal Housing Administration with down payments starting at 3.5%
- VA – backed by the Department of Veterans Affairs and current and retired veterans are eligible with no down payment
- USDA – backed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture for rural home buyers with no down payment
- Shopping – This is the fun part! The internet is the easiest and simplest way to shop for a home. There is a lot of misinformation on the internet so it’s a good idea to make sure you are using the most accurate and up to date websites. Most home buyers use popular websites like Trulia, Zillow, and Realtor but sometimes the information is inaccurate. It’s best to check with your real estate agent for up to date information on homes. Your real estate agent will be able to set up a customized website for you that is connected to the local multiple listing service or provide you with their website with an accurate house search. During the search process, you’ll want to keep track of what you’re looking for in a home-like the number of bedrooms, bathrooms, and backyard size. A rockstar agent will be able to pinpoint things to look at when buying a house and any issues so you can make the most informed decision.
- Purchase – One of the most critical points of making a successful home purchase is to stick to your budget. Lenders often offer more home than you can comfortably afford or you may feel pressured into an offer that is not within your budget. Make sure to set your price tag and remain firm so you can avoid buyer’s remorse or financial strain down the line. Considering homes under your budget will give you some leeway in a competitive real estate market. When you’ve found your perfect home, it’s time to make an offer. At this time, you’ll want to work with your realtor to negotiate expenses like repairs and closing costs. You should be prepared to pay for the home inspection, bank appraisal, and purchase homeowners’ insurance. Next, you’ll complete the formal mortgage application and provide the necessary documentation to seal the deal. For the next month, expect to go back and forth with your lender for more requested documentation like updated bank statements and pay stubs. The bank appraisal will be completed during this time and a walkthrough will be required. This is your last chance to identify needed repairs before formally moving in.
- Move-in – At closing day, you’ll be signing a few more documents and receiving your keys to your new home. Your realtor will be able to provide you with more information on exactly what you are signing and what to do after buying a house. This will make the process less stressful. Once you’ve officially become a homeowner, you’ll want to do these things immediately:
- Change the locks
- Submit a change of address with the US Postal Service
- Update your personal and professional contacts with the new address
- Mix and mingle with the new neighbors
Call One of Leading Scottsdale AZ Real Estate Agents Today
How long is the process of buying a house? If you work with us you’ll be purchasing your dream home twice as fast as the competition. As one of the nation’s top real estate agents, you can rest assured that your next chapter is in good hands. With over 20 years experience in the Scottsdale, Phoenix, and Paradise Valley area, Jeff Barchi is the realtor to call to purchase your next home.
Call us and start your home buying process today!