First time home buyers often feel overwhelmed at the idea of buying a home. So much so, they continue to remain in their place for longer than they probably should. So lets break it down and organize the process in such a way you have everything you need on this page.
First Time Home Buyers First Need to Answer – Where?
To begin, you’ll need to narrow down your home search to areas provide proximity to a particular destination like your place of employment. Since commuting to Midtown Manhattan happens to be the most popular destination for most buyers I work with, I created 4 maps that show first time home buyers different areas to explore all within 25 miles of Midtown Manhattan.
Visit the Towns
Getting a sense of a town’s vibe will help determine what stays on the list as potential places to live and those that are not a good fit. Take some time and visit their town centers, grab a cup of coffee, hang out for a bit and try to absorb as much as possible.
Attend Public Open Houses
Public open houses are generally held on Sundays from either 1-4 PM or 2-4 PM. You can search for them on Zillow.com, Realtor.com or Trulia.com. By attending open houses, first time home buyers can get a good sense of the price value relationship for the same size homes in varying towns. If you are looking for a 4 bedroom / 2 bath house compare what you can get in the towns you are considering – you’ll be surprised.
Exploring open houses will give you a feel for what types of layouts best fit your lifestyle. Do you need an office space, or maybe a play room? How about a quiet space for reading? Seeing homes in person will help you set your priorities for what your future house will best your particular needs.
Set A Comfortable Budget
Knowing what you can comfortably afford will quickly narrow dow the choices of areas and size of the homes to explore. The first step is to use the mortgage calculator to help determine what price works within the confines of your deposit and current income.Mortgage Calculator
Once your range is determined you have now zeroed in on making the rest of the process much easier.
Hire a Realtor to Advise and Do More of the Leg Work
Choosing a professional Realtor who is very familiar with the areas yo want to further explore will make life a lot less stressful. They will be able to coach on the various neighborhoods within each town, the school districts, commuting options and market analysis so you will prepared when it come time to make offers. They will alert you to the newest listings when they hit the market so you will have a leg up in this extremely competitive seller’s market. Right now a house that is a good location, well maintained and properly priced will have multiple offers. You need to have a professional help you craft your offer so it stands out.
Pick an agent with the ABR – Accredited Buyer’s Representative designation to ensure they specialize in buyer representation. View Amy’s credentials here.