Looking for that ideal home is like shopping for any basic necessities or big luxury items—you have to remember to first look around, compare costs, terms, savings, or to negotiate for the best deal. This is when a home buyer guide can help you know what to do to make the process smooth and uncomplicated and what to look out for to save you from frustrations or delays in getting that house you want.
One good advice in the home buyer guide is: Figure out how much cash you can and are willing to pour into acquiring a home. Arriving at a decision to buy a home will involve a significant amount of investment not only in money but also of your time. The cash outlay intended for the purchase of your new home would depend on how much you have stashed away for down payment on the property; your monthly net (take-home) income, current monthly expenses, and the prevailing interest rate. All these will define your budget limits.
Once you know these limitations, the advice to consider next in your personal home buyer guide is to find a good real estate broker to help you deal with the complexities of negotiating and dealing with sellers and lenders, and before you even begin to look around for your dream house, your broker could help you through the paperwork so you could be pre-approved for a mortgage, either with a bank or with a reputable local mortgage broker. It is advisable to consult with your real estate broker regarding the benefits of buying a house with someone that offers owner-financing. A careful study of what type of loan fits your needs can help save a lot of money on your part.
Another important rule to remember in your home buyer guide is to know your rights as a buyer and be safe from the evil trap of “predatory lending.” Predatory lending is when an institutional lender takes advantage of unsuspecting and gullible home buyers by slapping high interest rates on the loan, excessive fees (a lot of which are hidden), and a persistent offer to refinance loans at no benefit to the helpless borrower. The buyer should start being wary when the lender/broker starts employing high-pressure sales pitch; the buyer should always guard himself against outright deception.
Through careful planning and research, prudent budgeting, scrupulous spending and setting a realistic goal with a clear understanding of all costs and trade-offs involved — these are the necessary ingredients you will find in your personal home buyer guide to finally help brace yourself to realize that dream easily and without any snags. To summarize, these are the steps to take:
1) search for the house you want to buy by browsing through the local newspaper, internet websites or other available local references;
2) have a professional inspect and appraise the property;
3) do not vacillate; when you finally find the one you really don’t feel right letting go, make an earnest offer on the property;
4) close the deal by paying the parties involved (seller, insurance, tax institutions, etc.) and sign the closing papers; and then, by all means
5) receive the keys and move in.