Friday, February 04, 2011

7 Tips for First Time Home Buyers

A friend of mine asked me to provide some basic advice to her son as he began the search for his first home. Here are the 7 points that I felt he should remember as he started 'the hunt'.
  1. Get your own agent. Don't use the agent you meet at an open house. They represent the sellers, not you. You want a ‘Buyer’s Rep’ (an ABR), someone who will look after your interests. Typically, you want the busiest agent in the office. They have the best ‘systems’ in place for a smooth sale.
  2. Get a home inspection from a state licensed home inspector – money well spent!
  3. As much as your budget will allow – pick by location – it’s the one thing that money can’t change
  4. Be patient – there are plenty of homes available.
  5. Don't take on more debt than you can afford. Don’t do an interest-only loan; they are deadly when the principle kicks in.
  6. Take advantage of any state-sponsored first-time home-buyer programs. However, be sure to read the fine-print.
  7. Be aware that most short-sales and foreclosures are not bargains. Here is one place where having your own Buyers' agent is valuable. 

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