Purchasing a first home can be an exciting experience, but there are numerous factors to research and evaluate before the closing date. Buying a home involves determining affordability, considering different neighborhoods, home styles, and features, and privacy concerns. Although first-time homebuyers have some additional lending options and incentive programs available to them, financing is one of the most important considerations. Another is the home’s overall condition, age, and the buyer’s long-term needs.
Looking for a First Home
Before searching for a first home, a prospective buyer should determine answers to the following questions:
- What type of homes and neighborhoods are suitable? Is a planned community built by a builder like Bright Homes preferable? Or is an area without a homeowners’ association better?
- How much home can the buyer afford? This includes both a range of purchase prices and monthly mortgage payments. The more a buyer can put towards a down payment, the lower the mortgage payment will be.
- What features are must-haves versus nice-to-haves? For example, is a fenced yard a must for a dog? How many bedrooms and bathrooms are necessary? Is a townhome preferred over a single-family home?
- What are the current market conditions? Are a lot of buyers competing for a limited number of homes or are there more homes on the market than buyers?
- Is there a local Realtor available that the buyer trusts or is there someone the buyer knows who can refer him or her to a reputable agent?
Financing a Home
The majority of first-time buyers will need to borrow money to purchase their homes, which means credit scores and debt-to-income ratios need to be taken into account. Comparing lenders, interest rates, mortgage types and lengths, and fees will be important. Along with the mortgage comes closing costs and minimum downpayment requirements. Downpayment and closing costs assistance may be available through local government programs. Builders of new construction homes, such as https://www.bright-homes.com/, may also offer incentives, such as reduced closing costs or free upgrades.
Making the Purchase
During the purchase process, a buyer will need to submit earnest money and pay for a home inspection. A buyer may also need to pay for an appraisal fee upfront or it may be included in the closing costs. Earnest money is typically around eight percent of the agreed-upon purchase price and indicates the buyer is committed. A home inspection is a contingency built into the real estate contract that protects the buyer in case there are issues with the home.
Getting a home inspection is a critical part of the process and typically costs around $400, depending on the extent of the inspection. An appraisal fee covers the lender’s cost of determining whether the home is worth the agreed-upon purchase price. If the appraisal comes in lower, the buyer will have to make up the difference in other funds or the seller can reduce the purchase price.
First-time buyers in California who prefer new construction homes can contact Bright Homes at https://www.bright-homes.com/contact/. As an established builder in California’s central valley, buyer satisfaction, flexible designs, and excellent craftsmanship are the company’s top priorities.