When Should You Start Looking for a Home?

If you are thinking about purchasing a home in the next year, the sooner you start looking, the better. Why start so soon? There are a lot of moving parts to buying a home. Getting a plan in place is the key to success.

Let’s look at all the moving parts:

– Make the decision to purchase and set an ideal time to close on a home. For example, when does your lease expire?

– Look into a mortgage pre-approval. The first step in your process should be to determine your eligibility. You may need additional time to save money or work on your credit.

– Find a real estate agent to work with. A great agent is worth their weight in gold.

– Start looking at listing online that your agent sends you or that you stumble on yourself.

– Work with your agent to start previewing homes in person.

– Make an offer the seller accepts, complete your inspection, and finalize your financing.

This process could take anywhere from one month to as much as a year depending on how long it takes you to qualify for the mortgage and what you find that is on the market for sale that suits your fancy. As a starting point, set a goal to purchase by a certain date. Next up is making sure you qualify for a mortgage. The mortgage should always come before the house, not the other way around. You need to know what price range you are going to be comfortable in and how much money that will require, out-of-pocket at closing. After this you can start looking at suitable properties to ensure you don’t waste your time or anyone else’s. If you can’t qualify now, or don’t quite have enough money, at least you’ll have a plan on how to get from point A to point B. Depending on a lot of factors, you may find something that you love immediately, or it could take you months. But taking some extra time will ensure that you are comfortable in the area that you select and make for a less stressful overall experience. 

Happy House Hunting!!