Whether you are a first-time buyer purchasing in time to take advantage of the $8,000 Homebuyer Tax Credit or simply because you’re tired of renting, there are three things you absolutely need to do before getting too deep into your search:
1) Connect with a lender and get pre-qualified. There’s no sense in looking if you don’t have any idea what it is you’re able to spend. And make sure that when you talk to the lender you have a conversation about what you can comfortably afford and not just for what amount you qualify.
2) Compile a list of “must haves” and only then move on to the “nice to haves.” You will save hours of time if you filter your search through the items that you know you absolutely need to have, whether it’s a certain number of bedrooms or a certain style of floor plan. If a property doesn’t meet the must haves, give it the boot even if it has some of the nice to haves.
3) Connect with a real estate agent you are comfortable with. Nothing can save you more time than working with a real estate agent who understands both your needs and goals and can translate them into the property you are looking for. The web is full of information and it’s often conflicting or incomplete; a real estate agent can help you fill in those gaps.
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