We love working with Montgomery County first time home buyers! It’s always exciting to help someone realize the dream of homeownership. Here are our best tips to help first time buyers navigate the process of buying real estate.
1. Find your documents and make a budget. Get your most recent tax returns and pay stubs together. If you own your own business, make sure you have documentation for your expenses and profits. Once you’re clear on your financial situation, make a budget. This should include a savings fund for house repairs. Don’t forget to budget for other new expenses, like home owners insurance.
2. Find a real estate agent and a lender. All buyers can benefit from a good agent, but first time buyers especially need someone in their court. Real estate agents bring years of experience to the process and can help you find the house that is right for you. There is a ton of information online, but an agent can help you get a big picture understanding of what you’re seeing.
You’ll need to work closely with your lender in order to get a good rate on a mortgage. Having a pre-approval letter can also give you an edge in making offers. A pre-approval letter says how much money the bank will lend you. This gives sellers a measure of security that if they accept your offer, you will be able to get financing.
3. Narrow down your must-haves and start touring Montgomery County real estate. Think carefully about what is most important to you. A short commute? Space for entertaining? Good schools? Work with your agent to focus on the real necessities, then check out as many houses in your budget as you can.
4. Find your house and write an offer. Your agent will help you make a competitive offer. Don’t obsess too much over comparable homes in the area.
5. Get ready for bumps after your offer is accepted. Montgomery County first time home buyers often think there will be smooth sailing once their offer is accepted. Actually, this can be the most intense time in the transaction. This is when the home inspection will take place, and you have to get the details of your mortgage nailed down. Expect that there will be issues, and do what is necessary to deal with them.
6. Get the keys and start making your new house your forever home!