Buying a home for the first time can be an exciting but stressful journey. It is easy for new homebuyers unfamiliar with the process to make crucial mistakes that impact them for years to come.

In this article, we’re sharing five helpful tips for those ready to become first-time homebuyers. Make sure to check these tasks off your list while purchasing your first home:

1. Check Your Personal Credit

Your credit score lets you know your interest rate and what loans you’re eligible to purchase. Many loans require a credit score of at least 620, and a higher credit score can increase your chances of a loan being approved.

An adjustable-rate mortgage, or ARM, needs at least a 640 credit score. To improve your credit score, pay off debt, make credit card payments on time, and avoid opening new accounts before you plan to buy your home. You can check your credit score with a credit card issuer, bank, or anywhere else you borrow money.

2. Buy Within Your Budget

You will need to save for more than just the down payment. Creating a budget is something you can do to set yourself up for financial success long before you purchase your first house. Be sure to consider the following factors before finalizing the purchase:

  • Moving expenses
  • Monthly income
  • Monthly mortgage
  • Purchasing costs
  • Savings

3. Get a Home Inspection

A home inspection allows you to assess the quality of the house, including the roof, exterior, and appliances, before move-in day. The inspection gives you important insight into the home’s condition, which may reinforce your decision to buy the house or cause you to back out of the purchase.

Some buyers skip a home inspection to save time or money, but purchasing a house without an inspection can negatively impact the entire trajectory of your homeowning journey.

4. Make a Long-Term Plan

Buying a house is a significant investment of your time and your finances. While your first home may not be your forever home, keeping your lifestyle and long-term needs in mind is essential. If you have or want children or are looking to advance your career, make sure the home and the community are suitable for your goals.

5. Meet Multiple Real Estate Agents

Finding a real estate agent is one of the most important parts of buying a home. Different agents may have other areas of expertise, and one that is a good option on paper may not be the perfect fit for you. Talk to a few agents and choose the right one for you and your family.

If you’re a first-time homebuyer in Central Georgia, rely on the experts at Walker, Hulbert, Gray, and Moore for a successful purchasing process.

Our team wants to help you with your legal needs as you navigate the real estate market. Contact us at 478-987-1415 to learn more.