It’s a New Year – which means, everyone has a long list of New Years Resolutions. I want to travel abroad 2x this year, I want to save X amount, I want to lose 20 lbs, you name it, its probably on someones list. Every year, I make my resolutions. I have categories for my resolutions, Career Resolutions, Personal Resolutions, Health & Spiritual Resolutions. I am a total ‘list maker’ I love writing my goals, re-reading them throughout the year, and making them attainable and within reach.

Is your goal to buy a home in 2017?

If so, I would highly recommend getting started NOW versus waiting. Why now? January and February are typically the slowest months of the year for sales. Harsh weather, lack of inventory and people moving in winter months means less competition for you. Buyers in the 1st Quarter face much less competition from other buyers. (Funny thing is, inventory is only marginally lower than in the Spring)

Get started on your home hunt now

Since mortgage rates are likely to move up as the year progresses, the beginning of the year represents the best time to lock in rates before they get even higher.

First Step: Get Pre-Approved

Consumers spend hours perusing homes on Zillow, Redfin, and online. Some, even go out and tour homes, yet, have not been pre-approved. We cannot recommend enough – Talk to a local lender. The most important step in the initial home search. Get Approved. NOT Pre-Qualified. Have the lender review ALL of your documents. Paystubs, Taxes, Bank Statements, Credit, etc. It is so important to discuss your overall loan and financial scenario so you can understand where a proposed mortgage payment would put you at.  We have a great lender we highly recommend if you are interested in chatting with someone in our area.

Second Step: Make a List

When we sit down with clients for the first time and discuss buying a home we ask numerous questions. First and foremost – What is important to YOU in a Home? Everyone has different needs/and wants. What may be important to you is completely different than your spouse. You may like an open concept home, and he may like a detached garage. What we recommend is that clients make a Needs/Wants List. Write it down, what is important to YOU in a Home? Location, Price, Style, Size, etc. For some it may look something like this:

  1. Price, Home under $500K
  2. Size – 1500+ Sq. Ft., Min. 3 Bedroom
  3. Detached Garage
  4. Living Room off of Kitchen
  5. 5 miles or less from the City


Third Step: Start the Search! (fun part)

When you have taken the proper steps in getting pre-approved and getting the financing in order, the hunt for your perfect home is the fun part – seriously! Our clients send us their ‘needs’ list, and we begin a search in the MLS. We have special triggers so can get notified the second a home gets listed that matches your search parameters. Outside sites, I.E. Zillow, Redfin, Trulia, are great to search. However, just note, they may not be accurate. A lot of times a home is pending on Zillow even though it says Active, so always check with your trusted Realtor.

Sue tells everyone “When you know, you know”. I agree, we have clients that walk into a home, and instantly say “THIS IS IT”.

What happens after you find the home, is a whole separate article. 🙂

Ready to get started on your 2017 New Years Resolution of Buying a Home?

We would love to help you.