1. Decide to buy: The purchase of a home is the best “accidental investment” people can make, because it lays the foundation for a life of financial security and personal choice. Equity buildup, value appreciation, and tax benefits rank among the best reasons to buy a home. Additionally, consider the following facts:

  • If you are paying rent, you can very likely afford to buy a home.
  • There is never a wrong time to buy the right home, if you find a good buy and make sure you have the financial ability to hold it in the long run.
  • The lack of a substantial down payment doesn’t prevent you from making your first purchase.
  • A less-than-perfect credit score won’t necessarily stop you.
  • The best way to get closer to buying your ultimate dream home is to buy your first home now.
  • Buying a home doesn’t have to be complicated. There are many professionals to help you!

2. Hire your agent: Hiring the right real estate agent is important because of his/her multiple roles. They will educate you about the market, analyze your wants/needs, guide you to homes that fit your criteria, coordinate the work of other professionals (insurance assessors, mortgage brokers, underwriters, inspectors, appraisers, escrow officers, buyer’s/seller’s agents, bankers, title researches, etc.), negotiate on your behalf, maintain paperwork and deadlines, and solve any problems that arise.

3. Secure financing: While this part of buying a home is terrifying to some people, the process is actually quite simple.

  • Choose a loan officer/mortgage specialist.
  • Make a loan application and get preapproved.
  • Determine what you want to pay and select a loan option.
  • Submit to the lender an accepted purchase offer contract.
  • Get an appraisal and title commitment.
  • Obtain funding at closing.

4. Find your home: Before jumping in the car to look at endless property options, consider your wants and needs, including location, size, neighborhood, features and amenities desired, and priorities among each of these values. Also consider if you are interested in a fixer-upper, condo, or new home construction.

5. Make an offer: Keep a realistic perspective as you conduct the business of making an offer. Consider price (must reflect the true market value of the home), terms (schedule, what stays in the home, real estate fees, closing costs, home warranty, earnest money), and contingencies.

6. Perform due diligence: Because you can’t “return” your purchase like an item at a department store, it’s important to have homeowner’s insurance and property inspections in place.

7. Close: The last stage in buying a home is the lender’s confirmation of the home’s value and leal statute, and your continued credit worthiness. Your agent will keep you informed about progression of this step. In the meantime, stay in control of your finances, return all calls and paperwork, communicate weekly with your agent, confirm documentation with your agent a few days prior to closing, obtain certified funds for closing, and conduct a final walk-through of the home. On closing day, you will sign documents to finalize your mortgage, pay the seller, pay your closing costs, transfer the title, and make arrangements to legally record the transaction as public record.

8. Protect your investment! Even after closing, your agent can help you with many things, such as handling your first tax return as a homeowner, find contractors to help with remodeling, help your friends find homes, and keep track of current market value. Keep it clean and stay on top of damage and wear. Remember, attention to home maintenance is essential to protecting the long-term value of your investment!

Your real estate agent is the best source of information about the local community and real estate topics. Give Jackie Ruden Realty Team a call today at 435-272-7710 to learn more about local areas, discuss selling a house, or tour available homes for sale.

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