If you’re thinking about purchasing your first home, our Mill Valley CA Trusted Listing Agent can help you get started, understand the process, and know what to anticipate as you embark on this exciting adventure.
There are several benefits to owning a house, as well as being a first-time purchaser. Even if you have previously owned a house but it has been more than three years, or if your spouse has never owned a home, you may qualify as a first-time purchaser. Even if you previously owned a house with a former spouse but are now single, you may qualify as a first-time homebuyer and be eligible for state programs, tax benefits, and federally backed loans.
First-Time Homebuyer Guide
The first step in preparing for homeownership is to do a financial audit to determine where you are and where you need to go in order to buy a property. It’s a good idea to have at least three months’ worth of living costs in a savings account before applying for a mortgage preapproval. In fact, you won’t be able to obtain preapproved until you have it. Lenders will also consider the amount of debt you have, such as credit cards, vehicle loans, and so on, when assessing if you qualify and how much you may borrow for a new house.
Detailed Budget of Expenses
You should create a precise budget so you know exactly what your monthly costs are and how much you can set aside for a mortgage payment. Calculate everything you pay each month, including quarterly and annual payments for items like insurance and other non-monthly expenses.
It’s a good idea to be preapproved with your lender before going out to look at houses. That way, you’ll know how much you can afford to spend on a new house, including the monthly mortgage payment, down payment, and closing expenses. There are loans available for first-time homeowners that need a lower down payment or none at all. Home sellers in certain areas pay the majority of closing costs, and new home builders are frequently able to lower closing costs for their homebuyers as well.
What Type of Home do you want?
Looking at houses and areas online is a terrific way to see what’s available, figure out your likes and dislikes, and get a sense of the current real estate market price. Most real estate syndication sites, such as Zillow and Realtor.com, include interactive maps of the properties’ locations, as well as school districts and full images and videos of the homes. They will also include information such as the number of bedrooms and bathrooms, interior and exterior characteristics, the number of levels, and even assessment estimates.
Finding a Home
Finding a Buyer’s Agent
If you’ve never bought a house before, you’ll undoubtedly benefit from hiring a real estate agent, also known as a buyer’s agent, to assist you in finding and Buying a Marin County CA Home. Buyer’s agents are often compensated off the proceeds of the sale. When selecting a buyer’s agent, be sure to check reviews, seek recommendations, and ask a lot of questions to ensure you choose someone who will work well with you and for you. Your buyer’s agent will assist you in finding houses to view, explaining terminology like as due diligence money and earnest money that you may not be acquainted with, checking for visual concerns with the properties you visit, and determining neighborhood HOA costs, if applicable.
Looking For a Home
After you’ve done some preliminary web research, it’s time to narrow down your list of potential houses and make preparations to tour homes and areas. If you’re working with a buyer’s agent, you may email them your list, and they’ll discover comparable houses to show you based on your preferences and budget. You can tour properties on your own during open houses in the region, but make sure to notify any Realtor or private party seller that you are working with a buyer’s agent before going too far into the conversation.
Buying a Home
Making an Offer
When you locate a property that you truly like, you’ll want to be able to put an offer on it. You’ll need money to do so. There are several mortgage programs available, some of which are specifically designed for first-time homeowners. As a first-time homebuyer, you may just need to put down 5% or less, rather than the customary 20%.