Hunting for a new home can seem like a daunting task. With so many options available on the market, it may be hard to narrow down exactly what you are looking for, let alone knowing what you want, to begin with. House hunting should be an exciting time for you and this house-hunting checklist can help eliminate some of the stress and anxiety typically associated with the process.

Real Estate Agent

Having professional guidance through the process of finding and buying a home is valuable. Find a real estate agent before you begin the process of house hunting. The best way to do so is by word of mouth by asking friends, coworkers, and neighbors and read review sites. Real feedback is the most honest and it is the best way to go about finding a good agent that will provide professional service and experience for you. A good real estate agent will do the following for you:

  • Help you find properties that fit what you are looking for.
  • Coordinate showings of the homes that match.
  • Evaluate the seller’s asking price.
  • Help you figure out a competitive offer amount.
  • Negotiate with the seller and close the purchase.

Start Saving

The down payment on a new home can be very expensive so before you even start to think about looking for a new home, it is important to have a good amount saved up to put towards a down payment. Also, the fees associated with closing costs, cash-reserve requirements, title and loan processing fees all add up and catch most people off guard. So begin saving before you even consider buying a new home.

Credit Score

check your credit score before you begin your search. There is no sense in starting the process if you have a score that will disqualify you from getting approved for a loan.

Establish Your Budget

You need to establish a price range before you can begin the fun part of searching for a new home. There are plenty of resources available to help you figure out how much you should realistically be spending per month on a mortgage payment. Once you have established your budget, you can figure out the price range of homes you should be looking for.

Compromise

A general rule of house hunting is that you will most likely never find a home that has every single aspect that you are looking for. This is a process of compromise and prioritizing your needs in the home. If you are unsure of what to look for when house hunting, there are plenty of resources available to help you brainstorm what your needs are. The number of bedrooms and bathrooms, the size of the kitchen, number of stories, square footage, location and school district (if you have kids or plan to) are things you need to order in terms of importance. Create two lists, needs and wants. This will be extremely helpful when going through potential options because needs are completely different than wants (factors that are hard/impossible to change like # of bedrooms vs. easily changed like a bad carpet).

Pre-Approved

Getting pre-approved by a lender will do three things for you. It will help you establish the price range of homes that you can realistically afford. Second, most real estate agents today require that potential buyers be pre-approved before they start the process. Finally, sellers will also be more likely to take your offers knowing that you are pre-approved.

Begin Searching

Start your searching online because there are multiple tools and websites available to filter through the vast amount of listings. You can input all your specifications and look through homes that only meet your needs. This will ultimately reduce the number of homes you have to visit in person, thus saving you time. Today’s sites offer detailed descriptions, videos, pictures, reviews of the area based on schools, amenities and so much more. Utilizing the Internet can save a ton of time by focusing your searches, and once you have created a short list of homes, you can begin the fun part of visiting them in person.

When you find yourself in a position to begin looking for a real estate agent in Arizona, contact Jeff Barchi, P.C. Realtor. Serving the greater Phoenix area since 1999, Jeff Barchi and his team provide exceptional service to first time or experienced buyers buying a home in Arizona, specifically Phoenix, Scottsdale and Paradise Valley.