Do you need a first-time home buyers’ guide? If you are reading this article, odds are you have decided that your days of renting a place to live are over. You’re tired of landlords, busy apartment complexes and paying too much for a small space. Buying a home for the first time can be a stressful and scary endeavor but this first-time homebuyer’s guide will hopefully provide tips to help navigate the process. You want your first home to be the perfect one, so keep this guide in mind to make the right decision.

1. Plan Your Budget

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Before you can even begin searching for a home, it is critical that you know your budget. Be very realistic about what you can afford to save yourself the stress and financial issues later. A tip is to determine a comfortable monthly payment, given your finances, and then use an online mortgage calculator to determine a home price that works for you. Then, contact a lender to determine if pre-approval is available for your intended price. This saves time later and shows sellers that you are serious.

Also, allow a cushion in your budget to cover other costs associated with home buying. These include moving costs, closing costs, renovations or repairs if necessary and other items.

2. How Many Bedrooms Do You Want?

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Once you have a budget set, you can begin actually looking at homes. When determining the ideal size of a home, picture how many bedrooms you’d like to have. This is a very helpful tip for families or those planning on starting a family. Proactive thinking now will make sure the home is one that works for years. Staying within your budget may limit options with the ideal number of bedrooms but watch for other spaces that could be converted. Office spaces are commonly converted into guest rooms so do not be immediately discouraged if a home you are looking at falls short in the bedroom category.

3. How Many Bathrooms Do You Want?

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Another consideration should be the number of bathrooms. Although there are numerous ratios that work, perhaps you want a bathroom for each bedroom. If you have children, could they share a bathroom? Would you like a guest bathroom for when you entertain? Keep in mind how many full bathrooms and half-bathrooms you want. Deciding these seemingly small things now will yield benefits down the road.

4. How Big Does the Kitchen Need to Be?

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Outside of the bedrooms and bathrooms, kitchen needs should be considered when looking at homes. If you are a homeowner who would rather go to a restaurant than cook, the size and function of the kitchen will likely not be a major point of concern. On the other hand, someone who enjoys cooking and hosting dinner parties should be attracted to homes with large and functional kitchens.

5. Location

Not to be overlooked is the location of the home. The area can change quickly from one street to the next so research the area and make sure it has everything you want. Families should focus on the schools offered in the area and the neighborhood. Convenient bus stops or excellent public schools will not go unnoticed once you move in. Crime-rate is another serious consideration and these stats are available online. Other enticing qualities may be close shopping centers, grocery stores or public transportation.

There are many criteria to consider when buying a home and this brief article touched on five of the main ones. First-time homebuyer checklists are available online but realtors in Arizona are there to help during every step of the process. Contact Jeff Barchi with ReMax Fine Properties today to make the home buying experience easier. Scottsdale, AZ, as well as the entire Phoenix area, real estate is in a buyer’s cycle, so now is the time to make the move!