Finding the perfect home can be an exciting time. Walking through great spaces, envisioning your life in this layout or that – it’s a rollercoaster of emotions

This guide will help layout the things to do when buying a home.

Step by Step: Do These 9 Things When Buying a Home

Decide how much you want to spend

Using an online mortgage calculator, determine how much you think you want to spend on a home. Figuring out an estimated monthly payment will give you an idea on the type of home you can afford.

Start your online search

Using the number you just found, do a quick search to see if what you can afford is available in your market. Note the more extensive home will come a few steps later.

Get pre-approved

Once you’ve realized that you can actually afford to buy property, it’s time to get pre-approved. Ask your friends or family or do a quick Google search for a mortgage loan officer. 

Then fill out the application to get pre-approved. The number you found above may align with the amount the mortgage company thinks you can afford. Sometimes it’s different. Just make sure you’re comfortable with your monthly payment.

Next, add 1%

It’s estimated that homeowners spend 1% of the value of the home on updates and repairs each year. Make sure to include this in your budget, too. Adjust your number accordingly.

Find a great real estate agent

Now that you’re getting closer to actually finding your perfect property, it’s time to find a real estate agent. Consider recommendations from friends and family. Take the time to get to know the agents, you will be spending a lot of time with him or her.

Go hunting for ‘the one’

This might be the best of the steps to buying a home. While your research might start online, there’s nothing like stepping into the space that may become your next home.

Make an offer and negotiate the price

Once you find the perfect home, it’s time to buy it. Your knowledgeable real estate agent can help determine what is a good asking price based on market conditions. The seller may decline or negotiate the price based on their needs. Once you settle on a price, it’s time to get excited about your new home. 

Get a home inspection

One of the last things to do before buying a home is making sure it’s in good condition. Getting a home inspection will uncover any damage or issues that need to be addressed (or at least considered) before closing on the home.

Close on the home and move in

The closing day is the final step to buying a home and is pretty simple. You will likely need to bring your down payment and in exchange sign your name on many, many sheets of paper. Then you are the proud new owner of a home.