How to Search Like a Pro, Even as a First-Time Home Buyer

How to Search Like a Pro, Even as a First-Time Home Buyer

House hunting is similar to any other shopping experience. You must identify what you want, do some research, and you will eventually locate the best home for you. Searching for a new home can be daunting, but it does not have to be if you follow these few tips for searching like a true professional!

Understand what you can afford

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Once you have fallen in love with a particular place, it will be hard to return. Your mind may wander back to the property you first liked the most, even though it is out of budget. To avoid temptation, you should restrict your home search to properties within your financial means. If you continue to look at homes outside of your budget, you will be lusting over something you cannot actually afford. Start your search at the lower end of your price range, and then you can always go up from there. If you find a dream house on the low end of your budget, you will have more room to invest the additional money or spend it on decorating. Starting your search with an idea of what you can afford is a great way to get going!

Ensure you have your pre-mortgage approval done

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Another way to ensure you are on the right financial path is to get a pre-mortgage approval. If you are confident that the bank is going to lend you a certain amount of money for your mortgage loan then you can perform the very best shopping. Depending on your credit score or financial health, what you think you can afford versus what the bank thinks you can be different. Make sure you are pre-approved for a loan before placing an official offer on a home and begin the official search. Having this box checked off the list will mean you are well-prepared to find the home of your dreams. 

Continue to shop around

While you may need to compromise on certain things in your home search, this does not mean you should on the essential things. For instance, do not get a home with no yard if you want a place for your dog and future kids to play outside. Do not buy a two bedroom if you actually want three bedrooms. As mentioned, there will be certain things you might have to compromise on, but certainly do not settle! Unless you want an El Segundo home with specific architectural qualities, there will be plenty of similar homes in the same area that have the exact things you are looking for. Even if you cannot find an identical model for sale, chances are you will find something super similar to the home you love but just can not justify buying. Being open to continue shopping around will save you from making rash decisions you regret later. Thanks to the internet, there are plenty of ways to view real estate from the comfort of your own home. 

Create a vision

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Just like you create a vision for a room in your house, you should also have an overall vision for the entire house. Are you open to a fixer-upper as long as it has spaciousness? Are you hard set on having a renovated kitchen? Having a vision in mind for your future home will help you through the entire search. Do not let physical imperfections turn you away, for you should simply identify ways you could improve said aspects. Again, if it is a deal breaker or something you are unwilling to compromise on, then do not settle. However, if there are minor upgrades or cosmetic fixes and you love the home, buy it!

Choose the right neighborhood

Not only does the right house play an important role in your happiness, but the neighborhood also does. If you are set on living in El Segundo, you should maintain your search in that area. On the other hand, if you are still unsure what neighborhood you like, do your research. Important questions to ask yourself about the neighborhood include:

  • Are the values of the homes increasing or decreasing?
  • What development plans are in the works for the neighborhood?
  • Is the community friendly, and are the members active?
  • Is it close to schools or workplaces?
  • Is the neighborhood private or secluded?

Plan to grow into your new home

Aligning your future goals with the new home you are going to purchase is the best way to ensure you are looking for a home you can grow in. For example, if your business is taking off, you might want to consider a home where you have your own office space. If you have a young child and plan to have more, you will want to factor this into your buying decision. El Segundo, California real estate has a variety of options for home size and design. Living in the Los Angeles area can be beneficial because you can find many variations of houses. Whatever you are searching for now, remember to keep the next 5-10 years in mind, depending on how long you plan to live there.

Work with a local real estate agent

The benefits of working with an agent will not have you regret your decision. Consider if your agent’s style matches your personality. You will have to be in communication with your real estate agent a lot, especially if you are just beginning the search process. Your agent will have more tools in their tool belt to help you identify houses on the market that fit your needs. Not only that but double-check that your home financing options are open. If you're considering an FHA loan in Los Angeles, work with a professional at Convoy Homes Loans to help you through the process!

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