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Whether you’re just beginning the search for your first home, downsizing, or upgrading to a bigger house, the market is booming right now in Des Moines. There’s no doubt it’s exciting to put down (or expand your) roots in such a unique area, but the home-buying process can often feel overwhelming — especially if you’re doing it for the first time. Here are a few tips to keep in mind to streamline your Des Moines home-buying experience:
Get Your Finances in Order
This is often where the bulk of the stress comes from, so naturally, it’s the area where buyers should focus a good deal of their attention. It will depend on where you’re at in the process, but there are many things you can do here to set yourself up for success. If you’re beginning your search, you’ll want to know what your price range is. Getting pre-approved is a great option, and it can help you move faster when you find a home you love. The amount you’re pre-approved for isn’t necessarily the amount you’ll want to spend though. Take the time to break down the monthly payments of different prices so that you can determine a budget that matches your lifestyle. You’ll also want to avoid anything that could cause your credit score to decrease, like changing jobs, paying off large amounts of debt, or buying a car.
Your home-buying process will go a lot more smoothly if you have some support. Start building those relationships from the get-go. Do your research to find an agent you connect with who understands your needs, and work with a loan officer you trust to guide you through the lending process. As you engage with these professionals, don’t think of it as a one-off transaction. Their job is to help you, and building a relationship can make that much easier.
Narrow Your Search
The more specific you can be about what you’re looking for, the better. From price and location to number of bedrooms and style of house, there are so many factors for buyers to consider. Start filtering these down now to make your search feel more manageable. When you eliminate the beautiful home that’s out-of-budget or the perfect layout but too far from your desired neighborhood, you shrink your search down to a pool of real options.
These days, most buyers start their home-buying search online. And especially lately, buyers have even more flexibility when it comes to what they can do online. Consider watching tour videos of different properties or even visiting some virtual open houses to help you get a better feel for the homes you’re considering.