10 Steps to Shopping for Your Dream Home

Money talks has a great article that outlines the house hunting journey and what steps to take as you embark on the journey.  Here is a bit about the article, but the full version can be seen on the link attached below.  It is a great read for anyone thinking about starting to look or contemplating purchasing versus renting.


Shopping for a home brings many surprises. One of those is that buying a home is really two very different jobs: There’s finding the mortgage, and there’s shopping for the house or condo.

Finding the home is the fun part. Mortgage shopping’s more of a slog. You’ll probably want to eat dessert first, but don’t do it. Financially grounded buyers focus first on doing all they can to line up a mortgage, especially finding out how much money they can borrow. Only then do they start shopping for homes. Here’s the right approach:

1. Get your head on straight

You’ll see something you can’t afford — a bigger home, grander kitchen, better neighborhood, more bedrooms, fabulous design — that will start you rationalizing why you need it and how you can get it. This is normal.

These intense desires, though, cloud buyers’ judgment. Maybe just momentarily but sometimes long enough to cause mistakes with long-lasting consequences — like stretching to pay more than you should, spending too much on mortgage fees and interest, or failing to hold money in reserve for all the costs of owning the home. This is why savvy home shoppers nail down their financing first, before shopping for homes.

2. Pull your credit reports

danielfela / Shutterstock.com

The first step in applying for a mortgage is to check that your credit reports have no errors. These could cost you money in the form of a higher interest rate than you’d otherwise get. You can get a free report each year from each credit bureau — TransUnion, Experian and Equifax. Apply for a report from all three, making sure each is error-free. Do it as much as a year before applying for a mortgage so you have time to correct any errors you find. (Errors are more common than you’d guess.)

Read “How to Get Your Credit Report in 6 Easy Steps.”

3. Learn your credit score....

for more information and the full article click on the link below.