First-time Buyers Guide to the Galaxy or Homeownership
By Joshua Floyd | 4/14/2015
Renting is for the Birds.
Because I’m a relatively young person (look out, 30!) and possibly because of my background as a tattoo artist, most of the clients I interact with on a daily basis are in their twenties or early thirties. They are usually first time home-buyers who have begun to see through the whole rental game. Rent is expensive, inspections are invasive, and having to wait for someone else to fix things that go wrong can take forever! I’m proud of them and excited for them for making this important step. Buying your first house fills you with a sense of pride and a real sense of "home" otherwise unfound in a rental. More and more young people are seeing the benefit to owning, and it’s awesome!!! This article is for them, and hopefully will help get them started on the right track!
If You're Climbing Your First Mountain, You May Want a Sherpa
First time home-buyers are understandably a bit apprehensive about what will, no doubt, be the biggest purchase of their lives to date. Most make, what I would consider to be, a wise decision to seek out a licensed Realtor to represent them in this process. They understand that there is more than meets the eye when it comes to the purchase of a home, and it’s a good thing to have someone in your corner. This person is now considered to be the buyer’s agent or selling agent if an offer ends up being made and accepted. They are basically your Sherpa up the mountain of home buying. My advice is to rely on them and trust their expertise. They are there solely for you! Let them Sherpa you! Okay that sounds weird but you get what I’m saying. They know where many of the cracks and pitfalls are and can stop you from going over edge while holding a ... Ok, enough with the mountain metaphors!
Don't Celebrate too Early
Usually, the prospective home-buyer will call or come by the office, and they’ve already done their homework to some extent. They know which house they want, what area etc. That’s it, right? We found it! Should we just move our stuff in now or…? They may have gotten so caught up in the excitement (and it really is exciting!) they may not have given as much thought as to how they are going to pay for it! Maybe some folks can do an all cash purchase — and that’s just super — but for the rest of us there’s financing. When the subject of finance does come up your agent will recommend speaking with a mortgage professional, and by law they have to give you at least two to choose from. It’s important to pick a mortgage company with a good reputation and one that will fill you in on all options concerning finance. There are many different types of loans, choose the one that fits your needs! Did you know there are two different loan programs that finance 100%?
Proper Prior Planning Prevents Piss Poor Performance (PPPPPPP)
Once a meeting is set, the mortgage pro will explain more about the details of the transaction and write up a pre-approval letter. This small piece of paper that may be only a few words and gives your agent all the ammunition they need to jump into negotiations on your behalf. ALSO, IT’S FREE!!! Essentially, this paper, while not required to make an offer, shows the listing agent and seller that “we are serious and we are approved!” Plus, say you put in an offer on a house that already has an offer being considered, but we are pre-approved and the other guys aren’t. Who do you think they are they going to go with? You! Duh! You just won out over these other guys because you as the smart home-buyer came “packin’ some heat” in the form of a pre-approval! We are the champions, my friend. Boom. Now that the finance side is straightened out, you and your agent can go look at some viable options. This is one of the many fun parts of the home buying experience, a time for you to further explore what works for you. This searching phase also gives your agent time to get to know you and perhaps hone their search with your dream home in mind. My advice is to go out and look at several! Give yourself time to really figure out what you want. But once you’ve found the right one jump on it! In this seller’s market, most properties go quickly!
A Note From the Editor
When I first met Joshua, I was blown away by how passionate he was about his craft.
It was fascinating to hear him speak about the process of finding that perfect home for a client. It was obvious that he shared every bit of joy with the buyer when putting that sold sign in the front yard. It's refreshing to see a businessman who hasn't forgotten the human aspect of a business.
It doesn't hurt that Josh is a pretty damn good writer. We hope to see many more submissions regarding the homeownership process. Be sure to send your home-buying concerns to Josh at firstname.lastname@example.org. I know he will take great care of you. If he doesn't, send your hate mail to email@example.com.
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