So you’re thinking about buying your first home. A place to call — and make — your own.
It’s a big move, literally and figuratively. The journey isn’t always easy. It isn’t always intuitive. But when you get the keys to your new home — that, friend, can be one of the most rewarding feelings pretty much ever!
The key to getting there? Knowing the first time home buyer process. Knowing what tools are at your disposal. And most importantly? Creating relationships with experts who can help you get the job not only done, but done the right way.
You ready to live the dream? Here we go.
Pretend You are On HGTV
Cue your House Hunters narrator voice because we are diving right in. In the beginning of almost every episode after the introductions, the couple meets with a real estate agent.
They discuss what they need to have and what would be nice to have in their home. (Insert tv discussions about open concepts and granite counter tops here.)
Once you know what you’re looking for, the next step is to start looking at listings and housing information online. (This part? You’re going to crush it. You found us online, didn’t you?)
Hopefully, by this point you have somewhat of an idea of where you would like to live. Since I serve Central Arkansas, we are going to use that as the example. Let’s say that you want to live in Little Rock. If you view homes for sale in Little Rock AR, you will receive a wide variety of homes by area, price and amenities.
It is always a good idea to narrow your search as best as you can so that you can spend your time looking at homes relevant to you rather than not. For example, if you know that you are looking to be in a more urban environment and like traditional and victorian style homes, you might start your search by looking in Quapaw Quarter.
If you are ready to stop reading and start searching, head over to my website where you can search Little Rock homes for sale by area, features, build type and sooooo much more.
Find A Great Agent
Your relationship with your real estate agent can make your home-buying process easy peasy or like navigating rough waters, as it is the foundation of the home-buying process.
Your may or may not be the first real estate expert that you meet on your journey to homeownership but he or she is definitely the one that you will rely on the most. I don’t like to say that it is necessarily important to “interview” agents to find the right one for you. But, with that being said, it is still very important to do your research.
I always recommend Facebook stalking checking them out on Facebook. If they look like someone you would vibe with, have satisfied previous clients and serve your market, chances are, you will have a good experience.
Dust Off The Calculator
Whether it be a mortgage calculator or the big graphing calculator you likely had to lug around in college, you shouldn’t need either with the help of a good lender. If you don’t already have a lender in mind, ask your new BFF (AKA your Little Rock Realtor) for a list of three that might meet your financial needs.
When you select your lender, depending on your financial status, you may have the option to select your loan. Some programs allow you to put 0% down and offer 100% financing, others can require 5-20% down.
There are pros and cons to the different loan types and which one makes the most sense for you is going to depend on what you’ve got in the bank.
May The Odds be Ever In Your Favor
Now that you have both an agent who knows your housing preferences and a budget — and a lender to finance a house within that budget — it’s time to get serious about viewing homes. Your agent will provide listings you may like based on your parameters (price range, ZIP codes, features), and will also help you determine the quality of listings you find online.
Then comes the fun part: Open houses and private showings, which give you the unique opportunity to evaluate properties in a way you can’t online. If you are in the Central Arkansas area, you can view all open houses in Little Rock updated weekly right on this site.