Things First Time Homebuyers Should Know

Buying your first house is a big deal. It’s also not something you do everyday. Before you take the plunge and buy your first house, there are plenty of things to consider.

First, it’s all about the money, isn’t it? It comes down to this: how much can you afford? Think about how much money you have saved up over the years. Then talk with mortgage brokers to see what options are available to help finance your purchase. Factor in other costs, such as yearly taxes. Some homes can have taxes that are cheap– say, $600 a year– while others, especially if they’re near water like the Niagara River, can have taxes over $10,000 a year. Do some calculations and come up with the best price range for your situation. Most first time homebuyers around Western New York tend to pick homes in the $70,000 to $159,000 range.

When meeting with a mortgage broker to discuss buying a house, they’re going to want to know your credit score. The higher the score the less risk you pose to them. In other words, they don’t mind lending money to people with high credit scores because it’s easily assumed they’ll get paid back on-time and in-full. So, if you have a “low” credit score, it’s time to stop buying things you don’t need using your credit card. Pay down your debt. That can help improve your credit score, and you’ll want to aim for this months in advance before talking with a mortgage broker.

Since buying a house involves a big amount of time, money and sweat, it’s best to consult with a realtor. He or she knows more about the process of buying a house than you do. Their expertise, especially at negotiation, can prove invaluable when buying a home. It’s better to have a realtor as your trusted advocate than to go it alone.

Also, consider having the home inspected before you buy it. This way you know, for sure, if there are any problems with it that could/should be fixed before you take ownership. You’re better safe than sorry– an inspection report gives you a detailed idea of exactly what you’re getting into!

Take time to familiarize yourself with real estate terminology so you’re not ignorant. For instance, look up the terms “down payment,” “closing costs,” and “real estate comps” using so you’re informed about the process. Real estate, like sports, has its own language/jargon.

For help buying your first home in Western New York, don’t hesitate to connect with real estate broker Donna Littlefield. Her number is 716-578-1788 and she specializes in Wheatfield, Pendleton, and Amherst, which are all desirable northern suburbs of Buffalo, New York.