Looking to buy a new house?
The shifting economy has changed how many businesses and industries operate—including the real estate industry. Some changes are to protect those involved, such as increased documentation for the mortgage application process. Other changes, like the $8,000 home buyer incentive, are instituted in the hopes of boosting the industry. Put together the seemingly positive economic incline, new efforts to boost home buyer protection, the $8,000 incentive, and the vast array of properties on the market and you have a prime time to buy a home.
Buying a home
You’ve made the decision to buy. So now what do you do? Find a trustworthy and knowledgeable Realtor. Realtor’s make their money on commission so just looking for a home won’t cost you a thing. Many times home sellers pay the commission of both the buyer and selling agent.
A realtor should:
• provide expertise about the neighborhood
• compare recent home sales in the area
• make sure your welfare is protected when writing an offer
If you are looking at homes you may already have a mental wish list. Unfortunately, you may not find a 4,000 sq. ft. four bedroom home, with hardwood floors, stainless appliances and granite counters that you can afford. It’s a good idea to figure out what you can afford before you fall in love with someplace out of your reach.
Prequalify for a mortgage
You should sit down with a lender and decide how much of a down payment you can afford. You also need to consider how much mortgage you can afford to pay each month, in other words, prequalify for a mortgage. Next, get a pre-approval letter. This gives you an idea of how much house you can afford—narrowing your search and saving you time. However, you don’t have to give up all of your wish list. Take you wish list and separate it into needs and wants. What can you not live without and what is simply icing on the cake? At this point, your Realtor should send you only the homes that fit your criteria. Next, narrow that list to the homes you want to see. Finally, you start the fun part, viewing homes.
Josh Anderson is a Realtor with Keller Williams Realty in Nashville TN. If you have any questions about the real estate market, please call (615) 509-7000, email Josh@JoshAndersonRealEstate.com, or visit www.JoshAndersonRealEstate.com.