The Real Estate Encyclopedia
How Do I Know What Home To Buy And Where?
Category - Home Buying Questions - Search & Offer FAQ's

When purchasing a home, a buyer should be able to answer the following questions:


       How much can I afford? 

       How much of a down payment can I afford?

       Do I have enough cash for the closing costs?

       Can I afford the monthly maintenance costs of a home (utilities, services, etc.)?

       What is my credit rating?  How can I improve my scores?

       How much experience do I have in buying real estate? Where do I find help?

       What area and neighborhood do I want to move to?  Why?

       What style of home appeals to me?  Do I want a new home or a resale home?  Why?

       How many bedrooms, bathrooms? Do I want a basement or large yard?

       How soon do I want or need to move?

       Do I need to sell my home first?  Can I afford two simultaneous mortgages?

       Would I consider building a home?


The first step to take, when deciding to buy a home, should be a close analysis of your personal finances.  Once you have established how much you have in savings and available funds, contact a responsible lender or mortgage broker for help in analyzing what you can afford. Establish a maximum price you will not exceed.  That amount should have been arrived at by identifying the monthly mortgage amount plus monthly expenses you can easily afford.  If you are a two-salary family, consider budgeting your home purchase on just one salary. 


Next, you will want to identify the general area you would like to move to. There may be criteria such as commuting time to your place of work, local schools, proximity of hospitals, shopping, etc.  When you narrow your choices for the area, you will want to find local real estate agents to help you find the right home. Interview several agents and make your decision based on their area knowledge and the overall impression you get from interacting with them. 


When selecting the area, a good thing to keep in mind is that a house can be renovated but a neighborhood cannot.  It is safer to buy a home in need of remodeling in an excellent neighborhood, than to buy a beautiful home in a run-down area or neighborhood (unless there are clear indications that the area is on the rise.)


If you buy a home in need of remodeling, consider that the greatest return on your investment will come from the kitchen, bathrooms, interior paint, exterior paint and finishing a basement.  Before you make a large remodeling investment, be sure that the final value of your home does not exceed the average price of comparables in the neighborhood. 

Online home searching tools like Hubdin can also help make your home search easier.

Home searching is hard, but that doesnt mean it cant be fun! is the first home searching tool that allows you to customize your search based on your social footprint and personal preferences. Hubdins MLS data lists the home prices and calculates your estimated mortgage payments and allows you to view your home searching options on an interactive map and street view. Search for your dream home (hub) from the comfort of your living room.

Home Buying Questions - Search & Offer FAQ's
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