The first time buyer is a unique animal. Usually they are really worried about money , are often young, and are insulated. By insulated I mean they shop on line and really somehow think they do not need a Realtor. The problem is what they do not know can hurt them!!!!
As a Realtor what I try hard to do is establish contact. I do not start out talking about homes. I start out talking about financing. I talk about credit scores, and rates, and loan programs. By doing this I am building rapport with the buyer. I am seen as an adviser rather than someone who is trying to sell them a home. I find that if you approach the first time buyer with the components of home buying they will loosen up, trust you and work with you. From there you can start working with them to find a home.
I also find the looks on their faces and their joy to be a tonic for me in this business. It brightens my day. How do I know if I have done a good job? I know when the are legitimately sad to say goodbye to me at the closing.
I would really like to hear strategies other use with first time buyers.