Lauren Demerjian | Sterling Real Estate, Princeton Real Estate, Holden Real Estate


Image by Karolina Grabowska from Pixabay

Buying a home is a huge investment and the buying process can be very confusing—especially if you’re buying your first home. However, buying a home doesn't have to be challenging. By understanding a few key tips, the whole home buying process can run smoothly and efficiently.

Understand Your Needs

Even before you start looking at houses to buy, you should clearly understand your needs. The last thing you would want to happen would be to regret your purchase decision down the road. That being said, it’s extremely vital to do a lot of homework before even browsing for your new home. Think about your budget, lifestyle, future plans and anything else that relates to buying a new residence. This new home is an investment that can be with you for a very long time; therefore, you must make educated decisions throughout the whole home buying process.

Have a Hefty Saving Fund Ready

When buying a home, it’s very smart to put down a solid down payment. Doing this can help to limit the amount of interest you’ll pay over time, including possible lower mortgage insurance. While many lenders will permit a low down payment, it’s a good idea to put down at least 20%. However, this can be a hefty fee. In fact, even a 5% down payment on a $200,000 home is still $10,000. That being said, you’ll need a big chunk of savings in order to have an appropriate down payment. Be sure to start saving early and don’t pull the trigger on buying a home if your savings isn’t sufficient.

Explore Down Payment and Mortgage Options

There are many stressful factors in the home buying process, but the money involved tends to be the most troubling aspect. However, by knowing the many options you have when it comes to the down payment and mortgage, you can rest easy knowing that you made great decisions when it comes to financing your home. If you’re trying to come up with a solid down payment, you may want to try these options:

  • Conventional mortgages
  • FHA loans
  • VA loans
  • Understand Your Budget

    Understanding the budget is where many home shoppers fail. They may find a home that they can afford, but they don’t account for the unfortunate instances that can happen during home ownership. Things like a broken dishwasher, plumbing issues or water damage are all situations that can happen, and many of these scenarios can cost a great deal of money. That being said, be sure to look at properties that cost less than what you’re approved for.

    Don’t Focus On Market Timing

    Many home shoppers will continue to monitor the real estate market until they feel like the market has tipped in their favor. While some believe this is a very effective tactic, it isn’t a very intuitive move. That’s because it's impossible to anticipate the housing market. Prices will go up or down at any time, and it’s extremely difficult to know what will happen on any given day. So when you find that perfect home, pull the trigger and go for it—no matter where the market stands.


    No one should be forced to break the bank to secure a terrific house. However, a first-time homebuyer may be more likely than others to overspend on a residence, particularly if he or she fails to understand the ins and outs of the housing market.

    Lucky for you, we're here to teach you what it takes to browse the real estate market effectively so you can find a house that matches your budget.

    Now, let's take a look at three tips to help a first-time homebuyer purchase an affordable residence.

    1. Examine the Housing Market Closely

    Many great houses are available, and a first-time homebuyer should review a broad range of residences closely. By doing so, this homebuyer can establish a price range for his or her home search.

    Evaluate the prices of residences that are currently available in your city or town. That way, you can find out what it costs to afford a home that may serve you well both now and in the future.

    Also, assess the prices of recently sold residences in your area. With this housing market data in hand, you can find out whether you're about to enter a buyer's market or seller's market and plan accordingly.

    2. Get Pre-Approved for a Mortgage

    Pre-approval for a mortgage can help you map out a homebuying budget before you enter the real estate market. Thus, getting pre-approved for a mortgage can make a world of difference for any first-time homebuyer, at any time.

    To get pre-approved for a mortgage, you'll want to meet with several banks and credit unions in your area. These lenders can teach you about different mortgage options and help you select one that corresponds with your budget.

    In addition, be sure to ask plenty of questions about potential mortgage options before you make your final mortgage decision. This will allow you to understand the differences between fixed- and adjustable-rate mortgages and choose a mortgage that can help you avoid the temptation to overspend on a residence.

    3. Collaborate with a Real Estate Agent

    When it comes to pursuing a house for the first time, don't leave anything to chance. Instead, collaborate with a real estate agent, and you can streamline the process of purchasing an affordable residence.

    A real estate agent helps take the guesswork out of looking for residences. He or she will keep you up to date about new houses as they become available and set up home showings on your behalf. Plus, this housing market professional will do whatever it takes to guarantee you can obtain an affordable house that surpasses your expectations.

    Perhaps best of all, a real estate agent will help you alleviate stress throughout the homebuying journey. And if you encounter challenging negotiations with a home seller, a real estate agent will step in and help you get the best price for a residence – without exception.

    Ready to purchase a house for the first time? Use these tips, and you can acquire an affordable residence that you can enjoy for years to come.


    If a seller rejects your offer to purchase his or her house, there is no need to panic. At this point, there are many things you can do, including:

    1. Craft a New Offer to Purchase

    If at first you don't succeed, try again. Remember, if you find your dream house but your initial offer to purchase is rejected, you can always create a new homebuying proposal. And if you submit a new offer to purchase that falls in line with a seller's expectations, you may receive an instant "Yes."

    For those who decide to submit a new offer to purchase a residence, it is important to avoid making the same mistake twice. Thus, you should analyze the home you want to purchase, along with the current housing sector. Because if you use a variety of real estate market data, you could submit a competitive offer to purchase your dream house.

    2. Reenter the Housing Market

    A seller may reject your offer to purchase his or her house, and as such, you may need to continue your home search. Fortunately, quality residences are available in cities and towns nationwide, which means there are lots of great houses at your disposal.

    Of course, you may want to put together a homebuying budget, too. If you have a homebuying budget in hand, you can search for houses that match your price range.

    To craft a homebuying budget, you should meet with banks and credit unions. These financial institutions can offer home financing insights and help you get pre-approved for a mortgage. And once you have a mortgage, you will know exactly how much you can spend to acquire your ideal house.

    3. Consult with a Real Estate Agent

    A real estate agent is happy to help you determine the best course of action after a seller rejects your offer to purchase. In fact, he or she will do everything possible to help you streamline the homebuying journey.

    Typically, a real estate agent will learn about you and your homebuying goals. He or she then will create a homebuying plan designed to help you achieve your desired results. Next, you and a real estate agent will work together to transform your homebuying vision into a reality. And as you navigate the homebuying journey, a real estate agent will provide comprehensive housing market insights you may struggle to obtain elsewhere.

    Let's not forget about the assistance a real estate agent will provide as you get ready to submit an offer to purchase a house, either. A real estate agent will help you craft a competitive offer to purchase any home, at any time. Best of all, if your homebuying proposal is accepted, a real estate agent will help you finalize your house purchase as quickly as possible.

    Clearly, there are many things you can do if your offer to purchase your ideal house is rejected. If you start planning ahead for the homebuying journey, you could boost the likelihood of enjoying a seamless property buying experience.


    There is no feeling like the one associated with buying a house. If you know how to navigate the homebuying journey, you can boost the likelihood of enjoying an unforgettable property buying experience.

    Now, let's take a look at three tips to help you seamlessly navigate the homebuying journey.

    1. Create Homebuying Criteria

    For those who want to enter the real estate market, it generally is a good idea to establish homebuying criteria. That way, you can focus on properties that match your expectations.

    Think about the features you want to find in your dream residence. For instance, if you want to own a house that offers a spacious backyard, you can narrow your property search accordingly. Or, if you want to purchase a residence close to some of the nation's top schools, you can hone your property search to a select group of cities and towns.

    You may want to conduct extensive housing market research too. Because the more you know about the local housing sector, the better equipped you will be to find a home that you can enjoy for years to come.

    2. Get Pre-Approved for a Mortgage

    If you want to buy a house, you likely will need a mortgage. Lucky for you, banks and credit unions are available nationwide, and these financial institutions can help you get pre-approved for a mortgage.

    Meet with a variety of banks and credit unions. By doing so, you can learn about all of your mortgage options and select a mortgage that corresponds to your finances.

    Also, if you are uncertain about how a mortgage works or require other home financing insights, reach out to a bank or credit union for support. Banks and credit unions employ courteous, knowledgeable mortgage specialists who can teach you everything you need to know about home financing. As a result, you can work with these mortgage specialists to make an informed home financing decision.

    3. Employ a Real Estate Agent

    A real estate agent is a must-have, particularly for an individual who wants to minimize stress during the homebuying journey. In fact, this housing market professional will do whatever it takes to help you find a terrific home at a budget-friendly price.

    With a real estate agent at your side, you can streamline the homebuying journey. A real estate agent will help you establish realistic expectations for a home search, set up house showings and keep you up to date about new residences that become available in your preferred cities and towns. In addition, a real estate agent will help you put together a competitive offer to purchase your ideal residence. And once you are ready to close on your dream house, a real estate agent will make it simple for you to do just that.

    As you get ready to pursue your dream residence, it helps to prepare as much as you can. Thanks to the aforementioned tips, you should have no trouble enjoying a fun, exciting homebuying experience.


    Let's face it – purchasing your dream home may prove to be an uphill climb, particularly for a homebuyer who fails to prepare accordingly. Lucky for you, we're here to help you make your homeownership dream a reality and ensure you can discover your ideal residence in no time at all.

    Now, let's take a look at three tips to help you get ready to pursue your dream house.

    1. Establish Homebuying Criteria

    Finding your ideal house can be quick and easy if you establish homebuying criteria before you launch a home search. In fact, with homebuying criteria in hand, you can narrow your house search and speed up the homebuying journey.

    To create homebuying criteria, you first should think about cities and towns where you want to live. Next, analyze houses in your preferred cities and towns and consider home must-haves and wants. Once you know exactly what you want to find in your dream house and where you want to reside, you can schedule home showings and move closer to finding your ideal house.

    2. Get Pre-Approved for Home Financing

    Homebuyers rarely have all the money they need to buy a home. Thankfully, banks and credit unions offer a wide range of mortgage options to make it simple for homebuyers to purchase residences. And if you meet with banks and credit unions, you can review your mortgage options and get pre-approved for home financing.

    Obtaining a mortgage may help you streamline your house search because it enables you to establish a homebuying budget that you can use to hone your quest to find your dream home. Perhaps best of all, getting pre-approved for a mortgage may help you resist the temptation to spend beyond your means to purchase your ideal residence.

    3. Hire a Real Estate Agent

    Navigating the housing market on your own can be challenging for first-time and experienced homebuyers alike. Fortunately, real estate agents are available who can help you take the guesswork out of pursuing your dream house.

    A real estate agent is a housing market expert who understands what it takes to complete a successful home search. He or she will meet with you, analyze your homebuying goals and map out a homebuying strategy. Then, a real estate agent will work with you to help make your homeownership dream come true.

    As you conduct your home search, a real estate agent will keep you up to date about new residences that become available in your preferred cities and towns. He or she also will set up house showings and offer insights into the local real estate market. Furthermore, if you find your dream house, a real estate agent will help you craft a competitive offer to purchase this residence. And if your homebuying proposal ultimately is accepted, a real estate agent will guide you through the final stages of the homebuying process.

    Start your search for your dream house – use the aforementioned tips, and you can boost the likelihood of a successful homebuying journey.




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