How Do I Start Buying a Home

Question
I have had some credit issues in the past. How do I start buying a home?
Answer
How do I start buying a home? Well there’s a couple of ways to start. The first way is how a lot of people start and that is to just jump on the Internet and start searching for homes. Once you find some homes in what you think your price range is in a location where you want to live the next step would be to try to see those homes.

Some People Start with Searching Realty Home Listing Sites
Many of the home buyer search sites require you to reach out to a real estate agent to get the full address and to setup a showing. You’ll have to give the listing agent your name and contact information to get started. If the agent has been around awhile they will probably ask you about your financing and are you pre qualified. Getting pre qualified is the way to start your home buying process.

Others Start With Getting Pre Qualified Then Search For A Home
In today’s mortgage environment it is even more critical than ever to get your mortgage financing figured out first. This is true even if you think that your credit is in good shape. With all the occurrences of identity theft and credit fraud out there, it pays to get your credit and finance qualifications worked out ahead of time.

Know Your Home Price Range
If you do this first you can save yourself some headaches later on. One of the first things that you get figured out is exactly what home price range can you look at. This will save you time and perhaps some frustration. I can think of nothing worse than looking at homes only to find out later on that what I picked out I could not qualify for. Also, with weeding out homes below and above your preferred price range you can save yourself a lot of weeding out time.

Be Confident Knowing You Are Qualified While You Search
The second thing that that happens when you get pre qualified first is that you then can search for a home with confidence. Imagine shopping for a home knowing that the financing was a done deal. I know for myself when I bought my first home I had gotten pre qualified first and when I found the home I wanted to buy I immediately had the real estate agent write the offer. I was confident and excited because I knew that as long as the seller agreed to my purchase offer that I had myself my first home.

Let The Real Estate Agent That Your Are Serious And Ready To Buy
The third thing that getting yourself qualified up front when buying a home is that when you do reach out to a real estate agent is that it lets the agent know that they have a serious home buyer on their hands. Real estate agents are out to sell homes; as many as they can. They like to work with motivated prepared home buyers; it makes their job much easier.

Get A Pre Approval Letter
Be prepared to hand your real estate agent some type of pre approval letter from your loan officer. A pre approval letter can come in all different ways. In some states, like Arizona, there is a particular form that the Arizona Association of Realtors has developed that standardized the pre approval letter. Now, every home buyer who gets pre qualified gets one of these filled out by their loan officer and it is forwarded on to the home listing agent and home seller. This form tells the home seller that you are a serious buyer and that your offer is financially sound.

Fix Problems With Your Credit First Then Search For A Home
One last benefit of figuring out your finances first is to give yourself time to clear up any credit or income issues that you may have. It is no fun to get yourself excited about a home only to have your loan application shot down either in how much you purchase or in being approved at all. Credit has a sneaky way of changing with no real apparent or logical reason and the time not to find out is when you are ready to pull a trigger on a home.
If you snoop around GetPreQualified you should find all that you need to know about buying a home. Here are some resources that should point you in the right direction. Happy house hunting.
What To Ask A Real Estate Agent
Finding A Mortgage Loan Officer
Get Your Credit Report
Fixing Your Credit
Buying A Home With FHA Financing