Oregon First
Oregon First
Nancy Hicks - GRI, CRS, Oregon FirstPhone: (503) 268-1141
Email: [email protected]

Five Things First-Time Homebuyers Need to Keep in Mind

by Nancy Hicks - GRI, CRS 01/10/2021

Photo by ConvertKit on Unsplash

Up to 9.2 million Americans will purchase their first home in 2020. Homeownership is a wonderful and sometimes overwhelming experience. It's exciting to have a place that you can personalize and call your own. However, owning a home can quickly become a burden if you don't plan carefully. Keep in mind these five tips to make your first-time home-buying experience a success.

Essential tips for first-time homebuyers

1. Save until you have a 20 percent down payment.

Paying cash for a home is out of reach of most families. However, there are big advantages if you have at least a 20 percent down payment to offer. This automatically means that you won't have to pay for private mortgage insurance (PMI), something that generally adds a full one percent to the cost of your loan. In addition, a sizable down payment means you'll likely have equity in your home when it comes time to sell.

2. Get pre-approved for a loan.

When shopping for your first home, it's easy to fall in love with a property that may be a little beyond what you can comfortably afford. Getting pre-approved for a loan lets you know what you can safely pay for home payments. Plus, the sellers will know that you're serious about buying and that financing won't be a problem for you.

3. Get your agent's advice on how much to bid.

Real estate markets vary dramatically around the United States. Your local real estate agent is well-suited to help you navigate the market in your particular region. In some high-demand areas, you may need to offer more than the listed price, but in most areas, a seller is likely to accept an offer below the listing price, especially if the property has been on the market for a few months.

4. Be prepared for closing costs.

Closing costs, the money that you'll owe at closing for property taxes, title insurance, the title company's fee and other related costs, can be a surprise to a first-time homebuyer. These costs can vary between 3 and 5 percent of the total purchase price. The average closing costs for a single family home is $3,700 and is due when you sign the purchase papers, usually between 30 and 45 days after your offer is accepted.

5. Make sure you have an emergency fund.

While it may be tempting to sink your all of savings into your new home, what with a deposit, closing costs, insurance and doing any necessary remodeling, it's important to put a few months' mortgage payments in an emergency fund just in case life throws you a curveball. Many things can affect even the most responsible homebuyer's ability to pay their mortgage, things such as illness, job loss or a reduction in work hours. Plus, you'll sleep better at night knowing that you have that financial cushion.

About the Author
Author

Nancy Hicks - GRI, CRS

NANCY HICKS has turned her love for the area into a successful career as one of the Portland area's leading real estate professionals.  "I feel a real connection to this place," she explains.  "I cant imagine any place else in the world that could capture the essence of Portland."

With experience in interior design and remodeling her own home as well as others, Nancy knows how to help her clients find the solutions that can substantially increase the selling price of their home.  She is able to envision the specific alterations to a home that can make it more appealing to potential qualified buyers, and help buyers "SEE" a home they are about to purchase with all its potential. 

Creating a bond with her clients, Nancy is better able to deliver the results that they seek---and deserve---from their real estate transaction.   By bringing her clients the information, knowledge and advice that can connect them to their success, she is ensuring that they go about their lives with as little disruption as possible.  Nancy is committed to helping her clients get the most from the area and their home sale or purchase. 

NANCY HICKS has a distinctive approach to your real estate needs.

She combines her 35+years of experience and knowledge of the area to help you make decisions that will lead you through a successful and rewarding transaction. Whether you are buying or selling, Nancy can show you the best way to reach your real estate goals.  She provides an outstanding level of service throughout the entire transaction and carefully LISTENS to the needs of every client in order to maximize their important investment. 

Call Nancy today for a no-obligation consultation and discover "Your Connection for Success". You'll be glad you did!