Tom: We plan to buy a home in Northern Virginia. It will be our first one. I have to say that it is hard to keep track of all the opinions regarding the future of mortgage interest rates and the various tax credit options available to us. Can you send us links to videos or web sites that have helped your clients?
Steve: Tom you are not alone. Everyone feels the way you do. We will give you some good links below, but let us offer some counsel first.
We believe that you should enjoy the home buying process and that it should proceed at a sane pace regardless of the deluge of information that assaults you. To that end:
Determine how much home you can comfortably afford. You want to enjoy your new place, not be a slave to it. A good mortgage lender can help you with this. The first step in the home buying process should be to get prequalified. We can send you a list of great local lenders that our clients have enjoyed. Just drop us a line and we will email it out.
Determine that you can happily live in the new place for 4-5 years. You will not be able to turn around and sell it in 2-3 years and break even after your expenses.
Only buy a home if YOU REALLY LIKE IT ! This seems self evident, but sometimes clients get frustrated with the process and start to settle for something they do not really like. You need to be realistic in your analysis of what you can afford and what the market offers in that range.....but don't give in after seeing a handful of properties.
On average, in this market with a small inventory of homes in great shape, our first time buyer clients generally like to look at 10-15 properties before they feel they have a sense of what they really want in a home.
Home buyers who have owned before usually know what they want from years of experience, but that is not your situation.
Northern Virginia offers a tremendous selection of style and price for condos, town houses and single family homes close to employment and major transportation routes...so take your time and get a home you feel a real connection with.
Tom: That is good to know. I do not want to feel pushed or rushed by anyone.
Jan: Tom, here are links to solid resources:
Federal Tax credit site
Federal Tax credit video
Understanding interest rates
Just sign up and search away...no one will bother you. Drop us a line if you have questions. We are happy to help.