Two-story_single-family_homeBuying a home is a big deal and can be a daunting task for a first-time home buyer. Here are a few of the most common question that first-time home buyers typically ask.

What is my price range?

You do not want to bite off more than you can chew. It is advised you plan for, at most, one-fourth of your net income going toward house payments. If you decide to pay more, then you have created a little cushion for times when your monthly costs go up – increases in your insurance rate, spikes in monthly utilities, or other miscellaneous costs accrued. Once this is figured out, then you can ballpark what mortgage range you can afford.

What other costs are involved besides the loan?

Inspecting and appraising the home are a must. Without these no lender will allow a closing to happen. This can cost $300-$400 dollars for the inspector and $300-$400 for the appraiser. Rates vary, but this step will cost you hundreds of dollars. Depending on the location, you may also have homeowner association fees and will most likely have a portion of the closing costs. Talking with your agent and lender before you start looking will help you and them to assess you personal situation. Each person, house and location are different so sitting down for 30 mins with an expert will help you to have a solid plan.

Should I get a real estate agent?

The question should be, why wouldn't I hire a real estate agent? It's 100% free for the buyer! A real estate agent will guide you through the financial process and help you during all aspects of this experience. He or she will assist you with establishing your price range and work out ways you can save money during the negotiation process. The agent can also help with finding out which type of mortgage is right for you. Essentially, a real estate agent will make this stressful time much easier.