Buying your first home can seem daunting. The amount of work that goes into the process can look overwhelming and confusing. But our step-by-step guide breaks down the first-time home-buying process to make it surprisingly simple. Follow our EDGEhomes roadmap and get home-buying right the first time.
Before the house hunt begins, do a serious review of your financial health.
Check your credit score first. Having a higher credit score gets you a better interest rate on your mortgage. So, make the necessary changes in your budget to get your credit score at the highest number possible.
Then, check your budget and see how much money you spend every month. Having the clearest idea of your finances will put you in the best shape to begin the home-buying process.
The amount you put down will determine several factors with your home loan. If you have at least a 5% down payment there are several great loan options available to you, but they may require private mortgage insurance (PMI). If you have 20% down, mortgage insurance may not be necessary (check with your loan officer). There are also several low or even zero down payment options out there, depending on location, income, and more. Remember, the more money you can put down on the purchase of your new home, the less you will have to borrow, which will lower the mortgage payment.
Talk to a mortgage professional before you start the hunt and get pre-qualified, it will help you know what kind of a price and payment you can afford so you don’t fall in love with something that may be just out of your reach. You wouldn’t want to be looking at a $400,000 home on a $300,000 budget.
Pre-qualifying for a mortgage demonstrates that you are qualified and can afford a home. In the case of multiple offers, sellers look for those who are pre-qualified rather than those who aren’t.
To apply for pre-qualification you’ll have to find a lender. We recommend First Colony Mortgage as a preferred lender, because they offer the best in pre-qualification, lending services, and put customers first.
EDGEhomes has several real estate agents who are the best at what they do and are more than qualified to help you through your first-time home-buying experience.
View our all of EDGEhomes agents to get started.
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Once you have an EDGEhomes agent, determine what you need in terms of location, price range, how many bedrooms and bathrooms you want, school districts you like, the general layout of the home, and more.
Then begin researching. Our online tools show you exactly what’s available and help you narrow down your list of homes.
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“Photos don’t do it justice” is exactly the mindset you need to have when home-buying. Look for floor plans, because floor plans can’t lie. They show you the exact layout and physical space of the property. EDGEhomes’ 3D tours, that can be found on each model home page, are also a great resource for giving you a realistic feel for a particular floorplan.
Then if the floor plans and communities look good, contact an EDGEhomes agent to view them in-person.
If you’ve found a place that hits all your marks, act quickly. Work with your EDGEhomes agent to find the right home and to submit a purchase agreement. Sometimes you’ll be competing with other offers, so stick with your agent to help you through the submission process.
If your purchasing agreement is accepted, you will enter contract. Then the closing date of your new home will be determined by the stage of construction the home is at.
As your closing date draws near, you will be working closely with your EDGEhomes agent and loan officer to address items such as closing costs (appraisal fees, title insurance, property taxes, etc.) and to determine the closing date of your home.
Soon, you’ll have the keys to your new EDGEhome.
Getting a loan for your new home is an overwhelming part of the first-home buyer experience, but it doesn’t have to be! Watch as Jake from First Colony Mortgage walks you through the loan process, so you know exactly what you’ll need to prequalify and begin the process of buying your dream home.