If you’re thinking about purchasing your first home, it’s tempting to dive right in and start looking at houses. But before you dedicate your Saturday to visiting every open house in the city, you need to know what you’re looking for. Otherwise, the process of shopping for a home is likely to be long and frustrating. Ill-prepared and uninformed buyers will find it more difficult to discover the home that’s right for them, much less get to the stage where they’re ready to make an offer on a property.
Here are seven big mistakes first-time house hunters often make when shopping for their dream home. Avoid these errors and you should find it easier to find the home that’s right for you.
1. Not getting pre-approved for a mortgage
Shopping for a home before you know how much you’ll be able to borrow is setting yourself up for disappointment. Before you head to a single open house, you should get a mortgage pre-approval, so you know how much your lender will actually let you borrow. Otherwise, you run the risk of falling in love with a home you can’t afford.
“You get preapproved, and then you find a home,” Steve Anderson, a broker and owner at Re/Max Benchmark Realty in Las Vegas, told Bankrate. “That way you’ll make a financial decision versus an emotional decision.”