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Tips For First Time Home Buyers

By Charles Hopkins Published 04/21/2006 | Real Estate
First time home buyers face many challenges in understanding the process of purchasing a home, obtaining a mortgage, and knowing which type of loan will best suit their needs. Advice from well meaning loved ones can be helpful, but buying a home is a major financial commitment and you would be wise to educate yourself on the home buying process before taking the first step.

When you make the decision to purchase a home, talk with a real estate agent who can give you expert advice and valuable information. The purpose of this initial meeting is not to sign a representation agreement with the real estate agent, but instead to make yourself aware of local real estate customs in your particular area. If the agent has no time to discuss the home buying process with you, then keep looking until you find one who will. A good real estate agent will offer you information on the local real estate market and give you an idea of the types of mortgage products that are available to you. A mortgage broker or lender can also give you valuable information when you decide to buy a home.

The questions you should ask the real estate agent or mortgage broker include how to make an offer on a home you wish to purchase and the specifics involved in between making your initial offer and the final acceptance of the offer from the seller. Ask about the settlement costs, the down payment amount that you may need, and the length of time involved between the acceptance of your offer and the final closing date.

Make sure you understand your credit situation and what it means to you as far as applying for a mortgage. Down payment requirements and the interest rate you will receive are directly related to your credit score. You should be aware of exactly what is on your credit report before beginning the home buying process.

These tips will give you a good start in making wise decisions when you purchase your first home. Keep in mind that buying a home can be stressful at times and that a calm attitude and the ability to cope with any issues that may arise calmly will make the purchase of your first home a more pleasant experience. Buying your first home is one of the most exciting events in your life. Give yourself the information you need and take the advice of experts when you begin the home buying process. The experience will be less stressful and you will benefit from the knowledge you have gained.