Buying a home is a big decision – whether it’s your first home or your forever home. There’s a lot more to the home-buying process than searching online for the perfect listing that checks all the boxes. The key is being able to shop with both your heart and your head, and knowing how to differentiate between the two. This is why it pays to have an experienced real estate agent in your corner.
Getting Ready to Buy
Before you get caught up in the excitement of searching for the perfect home, consider the following questions:
1. How much can you afford?
Crunch the numbers and define your budget. By getting pre-approved for a mortgage in advance, you can go into your home search with a clear understanding of your true affordability, and a competitive edge when it comes to negotiating on an offer.
2. Are you set on a specific neighbourhood?
Before you narrow your search down to individual homes, consider what geographical area is best suited for your lifestyle. Keep the convenience factor in mind: how close is it in proximity to the amenities you use regularly?
3. What are your must-haves?
Put pen to paper (or pull out your phone) and create a list with three sections: must-haves, preferences, and deal breakers. This will help you gain clarity and you’ll refer back to it often when comparing homes.
4. Who’s on your team?
Having a team of trusted professionals in your corner to offer expert advice and guidance will help ensure you make the best decision for your finances and your future. This is why you want to choose a real estate expert who has your best interests top of mind. Your agent should be able to refer you to other reputable professionals as needed, such as a mortgage specialist, home inspector, and lawyer.