Website design By BotEap.comThe new year brings new commitments and new purchases! If you are one of the millions of people who are about to make the purchase of a lifetime … a new home, read on to discover the top five things to do now! These things will put you in a better place and on the right track to make your home buying process run smoothly. This is an exciting chapter in your life, and doing these things will help lower your stress levels. Website design By BotEap.comOne of the most important things you can do to put yourself in a better position to take out a home loan for the home of your dreams is to check your credit, so there are no surprises. A bad credit score will limit you greatly in your home search because you will not be able to obtain certain loans. A record number of home purchase agreements fall through due to poor credit ratings. Correcting your score as much as you can before entering the home buying process will put you in a much better position to get your dream home with minimal headache. Website design By BotEap.comSecond, do some research. The real estate market is always changing, so smart buyers really need to know the area they are interested in, the current rates and the details of the housing information. You can start by doing a simple search online for neighborhoods in your area, school districts, traffic information, ratings and reviews from residents, and even start talking to a few local agents. Website design By BotEap.comOnce you narrow down your interests and areas, you can begin to focus on the area you want to live in and even speak to real estate agents who specialize in that area to provide you with more detailed information. Having a good partnership with your agent is a great way to start your home search and do the paperwork at an efficient pace. Also, find out how you can maximize the value of your money. The home search is a powerful tool, but you may not fully understand what you are seeing just on a first visit. Some professionals in the field are needed to point out the features of the home that can be improved. Website design By BotEap.comFourth, expand your cash cushion for down payments. We all know that paying interest on your own home should be kept to a minimum, so save now while you can to lower those monthly bills. After closing, this will minimize your anxiety. Website design By BotEap.comLastly, moving into a new home gives you the best chance of getting rid of some things that you don’t need or that have been in your garage forever. Sell it, donate it, give it away, whatever you do, a fresh start in a new home will be so much more welcoming without all the clutter. Website design By BotEap.comTake a final review of your mortgage rates and options. Make sure you qualify for a home loan and start rolling by comparing mortgage rates online or with your agent. Home sweet home is that easy!