Ready to buy your first home in Columbus in 2023? At Live Well Columbus, we specialize in helping first-time home buyers like you find their dream property in Columbus and it’s many surrounding communities.
Before you start searching for homes online, it’s important to take the first step to house shopping: Getting pre-approved for a mortgage.
Your pre-approval will tell you what you can afford and what your monthly payment will be, so it’s important to determine this before you start searching for your new home.
Pre-approval is good for about 30-90 days, so once you’re ready, take these first 3 steps to get it done.
- Contact us and we’ll send over a list of lenders we know and trust.
- Look over the list, check out online reviews, and ask friends and family for referrals.
- Email 2-3 lenders you like or let me introduce you over email.
Once you’ve got your pre-approval letter in hand, it’s time to start the search!
Before we hop into the home search, we like to advise our clients to create a “Needs” list and a “Wants” list. This will help us to really focus on the things that are most important in your future home.
Needs are the non-negotiable features; the features you simply must have in your next home. Wants are the ones you’d like to have, but you can add or change down the road. Remember, you can’t change the lot or the location so make sure you love both.
Once you’ve established what you’re looking for, we will set you up on a search so you can receive an email the second a home that fits your criteria goes live. If you have any questions about a property, send us the information and we will find out for you. When you see a home you want, it is key to promptly tour the property so you don’t miss out on your dream home. Be sure to send us any listings you’d like to view, and we will coordinate and set up a showing.
After touring houses and choosing the one you love, it’s time to make an offer. To do this, you’ll need your pre-approval letter or proof of funds. You’ll also need to make an escrow earnest money deposit of at least 1% of the purchase price – don’t worry, this will go towards your closing costs at closing.
Next, depending upon the terms of the purchase contract, you’ll have a limited window to perform home inspections, and either proceed with the home as is, or negotiate on remedies with the sellers. If you pass through inspections without any concerns, then your lender will order an appraisal, and proceed with underwriting your loan.
Unless buying a property in cash, appraisals are always ordered by and for the lender. It’s important to note that FHA appraisals are performed at a higher level than Conventional appraisals. Conventional appraisals often use the current market value of a property to estimate its worth.
Once the appraisal is approved by the lender, then we coordinate and schedule closing with all parties.
If you’d like a more in-depth look into the home buying process and tips on preparing for buying your first home, book a buying consult with us and we’ll send you a copy of our 90 Days to Homeowner Success Workbook!
Live Well, Columbus.
Lauren & Grace