a first-time home buyer’s guide to buying a house
As a first-time home buyer, buying a house can be a bit overwhelming, especially when you have no idea where to begin. To help out, here are seven easy steps that you can follow in your home buying process. With Sunova, buying a home is as easy as 1, 2, 3.
1) Figure out your finances and get pre-approved
Before you begin looking for a home, you should be familiar with your financial situation. Ask yourself:
- What’s your monthly income?
- What expenses do you have?
- Do you have enough set aside for a down payment?
This is also usually the time you’ll want to sit down with one of our associates to find out how much you can (and should) actually spend on your new home. Getting your mortgage pre-approved can help save you time and a financial headache when you are finally ready to make an offer on your dream home.
Whether you’re a first-time home buyer or buying for the first time in a long time, there are additional fees to consider when purchasing a home, such as:
- The house appraisal ($250 – $350),
- Lawyer fees ($1,000 – $1,250),
- Land transfer tax (based on the value of the property),
- Possible repairs or renovations before moving in,
- And, if it’s your first place, you’ll likely need to buy some furniture and household items.
Make sure you are familiar with all of the costs associated with purchasing a home and, more importantly, make sure you work them into your budget.
3) Ask for help from professionals
Working with a skilled realtor, a mortgage professional (like one of our lending associates), a lawyer, and an appraiser gives you access to a wealth of knowledge. These professionals will be happy to help you with the home buying process, as well as answer any questions you may have.
If you don’t have a realtor or lawyer lined up, our staff are happy to recommend someone local!
4) Start shopping
It’s almost time to find your dream home! Before you start, take some time to figure out what you want in a home, including the location, size, and features. Let your realtor know and they will help narrow down the options for you. Trust us, having an idea of what you want before looking is a huge help.
5) Make an offer
Found the home that you want? Great, make an offer! Don’t know how? That’s ok. Ask your lawyer and real estate agent to help draft your Offer to Purchase.
6) Finalizing the offer
Congratulations, you finally sealed the deal! Remember, there is a lot that needs to be done to complete the purchase (and on top of everything, you now have to pack). Again, your realtor, lawyer, and lender can help (not with the packing, just with all the other stuff).
7) Make another budget
So, the home is yours and you’ve moved in. Now that you are a homeowner there are a couple of things to consider, specifically your budget. Make sure you have enough money each month to make your mortgage payments, cover home repairs and maintenance, and start setting money aside for a rainy day. Again, a Sunova associate can help you figure out how much you will need each month and help you save for the future.
We hope you enjoy your new home. Please contact us if you need anything or have any questions. We’re more than happy to help.