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8 Things to Do While Preparing to Buy A Home in California
Posted by intodoorsblog — December 14, 2020
So, you have decided to welcome stability in your life by buying a home in California! For starters, you need to prepare yourself for a roller coaster ride! Because finding your way towards homeownership can be an overwhelming experience if not done right. Buying a home is the first most significant investment most people make. Therefore, they appear to be clueless at times.
Nevertheless, if you’ve decided to buy a home, here are some things to do to prepare for what lies ahead!

Tips to Start Preparing to Buy a Home in California?

1. Know What you Want

As a first-time homeowner, you would have to make up your mind about what you want from your property. What do you want in terms of space, area, neighborhood, etc? Or is there any specific quality that you are looking for in your home? To make sound decisions, you should know the pros and cons of every detail. For instance, more space does not always mean better; having a lawn requires regular upkeep. And even if you think you can manage, can you afford more space and a garden?
So, making up your mind early on in your search will help you have a clear idea about your financial goals.

2. Get a Hold of Your Finances

As a potential homeowner, you need to have a solid idea about your finances. You need to be well aware of your credit score and budget. So, leave no stone unturned. If you find the credit scores in the lower ranges, give yourself time, and work on improving them as they are essential for the lenders.
Similarly, you can start trimming your liabilities and extra expenses to make room for the mortgage you’ll be paying every month. Once you have your credit score ready, you can then draw a budget for your home. It will act as a threshold and hold you from going after properties you can’t afford.

3. Commit to a Saving Plan

To buy a house you will need some serious cash reserves. You will need them to prove to your lender that you can afford housing payments that may be higher than what you are paying now as rent. You can start saving extra cash in advance that can help you in many ways while buying a house. This might mean that you would have to make drastic changes in your lifestyle to cut spending. You can also find ways to earn some extra cash and increase your income.
This extra cash will not only help set you up a better down payment but also assist you with other miscellaneous costs like closing costs or moving costs etc.

4. Exploring Neighborhoods

By this time, in your preparation to buy a home, you know what type of community you want. Exploring different communities to find the one that best suits your needs in terms of transportation and other amenities. This will help to finalize your budget and other financial decisions.
You can use online data to see the property trends in that particular area. Start reading websites, newspapers, and magazines that have real estate listings. Make a note of the houses that you are interested in and see how long they stay on the market. In short, cover all the bases before jumping to any conclusion.

5. Get an Agent Onboard

The next thing you need to do is to hire a real estate agent. This step will help you add experience in your corner of the ring. An experienced and vigilant real estate agent will guide you throughout the process and try to hunt the best deal for you. They can help you with matters related to due diligence. You can ask your friends or family for suggestions. At this point, make sure to hire someone who has local area knowledge.
Working with a real estate agent that understands the market value is crucial if you don’t want to overpay for your house. In addition to the actual purchase price of the house, other fees can cost you more if you don’t understand the value of the home.

6. Start Mortgage Shopping

The next step towards preparing to buy a home is a mortgage. Once you have an idea of how much money you can invest and the credit score and have an understanding of the market, you can now move towards mortgage shopping. Reach out to multiple mortgage lenders and try to get pre-approved. This pre-approval will further establish your budget and put you in a better position to buy.
Each lender offers their plans, so make sure you get the best that’s out there. Seeing multiple lenders will also give you an idea of the rates that exist in the market.

7. Compare Different Properties

Once you have a reliable agent onboard and a pre-approval, you can start looking at possible deals available in the market. As you have already narrowed down the neighborhoods, now look for the homes individually. Remember, never fall in love with a house, and always make your decision based on the neighborhood!
You can visit different open houses to let you see what is available in that area and what best fits your budget. Even if you don’t want to make an offer on the house, interview different agents representing the house to get an even better understanding of the market. The goal is to estimate the worth of the property. Your agent will help you figure out the value of the property. Remember, doing your homework will help you understand the market better.

8. Look Into the Future

The most important thing you need to realize before closing a deal is the prospect of that place. Don’t fall in love with the home; fall in love with the area. Select a location with schools, parks, and hospitals nearby.
Also, avoid going for properties such as foreclosures, bank sales, and auctions. Never skip the inspection and make sure you check the credibility of the seller. If you want more information, reach out to your very own Dream Home Finder!
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About Author:
Anthony Haulcy

Award-Winning, Multi-Million Dollar Producing Real Estate Broker and Mentor to the Masses. 
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