November 27, 2008

Ten Rules to Follow When Buying a Home

1. Stay put. Commit yourself to your new home for at least 4 - 7 years before making your next move.
2. Money matters. If you're considering a mortgage, shore up your credit and get a copy of your credit report.
3. Get pre-approved. Save yourself the time and grief of looking at houses you can't afford.
4. Determine how large your mortgage can be. Explore different loan options to determine the best scenario for you.
5. Decide what and where you want to buy. Prioritize your needs (location, schools, local amenities, home features).
6. Consider your resale value even if you don’t think you'll be moving.
7. Do your homework. Write a contract based on current sales trends of similar homes in the neighborhood.
8. Calculate the hidden costs. Property taxes, insurance, maintenance, and homeowner association fees can impact your wallet over time.
9. Don’t be house poor. Double and triple check to be sure you haven't maxed yourself out on the cost of your home and have nothing left for repairs.
10. Get help. Use a REALTOR® to get the most for your money. It pays to have someone looking out for your interests

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