Top 5 Resolutions for Buyers Looking to Get Off the Sidelines and into the Real Estate Game

By Keith Loria

If 2014 is the year you’re going to jump off the sidelines and into the housing market, the following resolutions will undoubtedly make the home-buying process a little simpler for everyone involved.

1. Hire a Reputable Agent. With the merging of technology and real estate, things often move very quickly during the house hunting process. This means you’ll want an agent to help you identify the best home for your specific needs and the best way to make your dream house a reality. An experienced real estate agent will save you time and money and simplify the stressful nature of the hunt.

2. Know Your Credit Score. Your financial history will be a driving force in your hunt for a house, as this simple number can affect how much banks will be allowed to loan you for your mortgage. Therefore, it’s crucial to know your credit score from the beginning. And if you find any errors within your credit report, start working on getting them fixed immediately. You can get a free copy of your credit report from each of the credit reporting bureaus once a year from, but correcting mistakes can be costly and time consuming. Don’t wait until you find a house to learn that your credit score isn’t strong enough to let you borrow the money needed to make a purchase.

3. Get Pre-Approved for a Mortgage. While you’ll want to shop around for the best mortgage, once you find the one that fits your needs, get a pre-approval letter so you can prove to sellers that you are serious about any bids. The last thing you want is to lose your dream home to someone who swooped in with a bid while you were waiting to find out if you would be approved for financing.

4. Assemble a Team. In addition to an agent, you should also have a lawyer, mortgage lender and home inspector on hand who will be at the ready when your search is over. These real estate professionals are a necessary part of completing a real estate transaction, so be sure you have done your research ahead of time and have talented people ready to help.

5. Dare to Dream. If you’ve been dreaming of a four-bedroom house with a finished basement, sunroom and a pool and you’re shown a house you like sans the pool and sunroom, don’t jump at it just because it’s close enough. Search for your dream home and even if you have to make concessions down the line, make sure it’s a house you can see yourself living in for a decade or more. Don’t make any rash decisions and be happy with the house you eventually decide to buy.

For more tips on buying a home, contact our office today.

Reprinted with permission from RISMedia. ©2014. All rights reserved.