Getting ready to buy your first home can be overwhelming. But understanding every step of the process and some preparation can go a long way toward helping to make one of the biggest investments of your life a smooth experience.

Are your finances in order? How much house can you afford to buy? Are you aware of closing and insurance costs? What about property taxes and homeowners’ association (HOA) fees?

Making the transition to first-time homeownership may seem overwhelming as you learn various real estate terms, provide proper documentation for financing and navigate the many things needed for the home purchase to be approved. While it’s easy to search for answers online, some issues won’t be easily resolved without the help of an experienced mortgage broker and real estate professional.

In its 2018 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers, the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) reported that first-time home buyers made up 33% of all buyers. Additionally, 87% of buyers purchased their home through a real estate agent or broker.

If you are considering buying your first home, here are a few points you may want to keep in mind throughout the process:

  1. It is important to understand the financial aspects involved in buying a home. For example, you will need to set an honest and realistic budget for an affordable mortgage payment. Compile all the necessary financial documents, including credit reports and scores, save up for a down payment and try to boost your credit score if it is not rated very good to excellent. In the 2018 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers, NAR reports that first-time buyers who financed their home typically financed 93% of their home, compared to repeat buyers at 84%. If you’re unsure where to start, a mortgage broker should be able to help.
  2. Make sure you consider all the costs involved in buying and owning a home, including principal and interest on the loan, taxes, insurance and inspection costs, as well as future costs like utilities, maintenance, commuting, HOA fees and possible home upgrades.
  3. If you don’t understand a term or know what to do next, always consult an expert. As an experienced real estate professional, I can help you find a property, negotiate the deal and guide you through every step of the home-buying process.

To learn more about how to start planning for your first home purchase, contact a Coldwell Banker Pacific Properties-affiliated sales associate today. Whether you are looking to buy a home now or are taking steps to purchase one in the future, a Coldwell Banker agent can help find the answers you need.