You’re finally ready to purchase a new home. You’ve been renting all your life and you just started a new job that will finally allow you to realize the American Dream – owning your very own place! You’ve started looking up homes for sale online, have scouted some builders and have found a few that even look promising. It might feel like you’re well on your way – and you are – but there a few more steps to go through before you send in your first offer!
Step 1: Take stock of your finances.
Purchasing your first home is going to cost a few bucks. From packing supplies to closing costs, you will rarely get by without spending some money. Make sure you have some funds saved up before embarking on this process.
Finances are about more than just how much money you have saved up. They’re about your entire financial picture.
- How does your credit look?
- Are there collections?
- How long have you had your accounts?
These are all questions that are going to come up, especially once you move on to step two…
Step 2: Decide on a mortgage lender.
Picking a lender shouldn’t be something you decide lightly. Mortgage lending is a fairly standardized process at this point, however, not all lenders are created equal. The best way to decide on a lender is to ask around. Your experience can vary greatly even between lenders that work for the same company, so word of mouth is key here. Most of us know someone who has bought a home recently. Take some time, call up that friend or relative, and ask how their experience was.
As a side note – be prepared for the lender to ask for a lot of documentation. Guidelines are strict, but they are that way for your protection.
Step 3: Choose the right real estate agent.
Your real estate agent is your cheerleader and boxing manager, guidance counselor, and coach. Just like selecting a lender, you should use word of mouth when choosing your real estate agent. You’re going to be spending a lot of time with this individual, and they will be doing the heavy lifting during negotiations. Their expertise can be invaluable and you want to make sure you’re on the same page with them at all times.
Step 4: Decide on your location – while remaining flexible.
You know what they say – location, location, location! While we don’t know who ‘they’ are, we do understand ‘location.’ Access to highways and shopping centers, the time it takes for you to get to work, neighborhoods, and school districts. These are all factors you must take into account when deciding on where to build your new home. This, for many, is a bigger decision than the type of home itself. Choose an approximate location – but remain flexible. Availability might be limited and it might push you outside your limits a bit. Talk to your newly found realtor to get a good feel for the market in different locations.
Step 5: Pull the trigger!
Once you have the other four pieces in place – you’re almost ready! Selecting a builder to build your dream modular home is the final major decision. You want someone with vision, options, and a perfected process. And, lucky for you, we know just the one!