First-Time Home Buyers

We love working with first time buyers!  If you have never bought a home, or it has been a while, use the guide below for helpful hints and tips and learn how to avoid common mistakes when buying your first home in the Charlotte area.

  • Pre-Qualification: Meet with a mortgage broker and find out how much you can afford to pay for a home.
  • Pre-Approval: While knowing how much you can afford is the first step, sellers will be much more receptive to potential buyers who have been pre-approved. You'll also avoid being disappointed when going after homes that are out of your price range. With Pre-Approval, the buyer actually applies for a mortgage and receives a commitment in writing from a lender. This way, assuming the home you're interested in is at or under the amount you are pre-qualified for, the seller knows immediately that you are a serious buyer for that property. Costs for pre-approval are generally nominal and lenders will usually permit you to pay them when you close your loan.
  • List of Needs & Wants: Make 2 lists. The first should include items you must have (i.e., the number of bedrooms you need for the size of your family, a one-story house if accessibility is a factor, etc.). The second list is your wishes - things you would like to have (pool, den, etc.) but that are not absolutely necessary. Realistically for first-time buyers, you probably will not get everything on your wish list, but it will keep you on track for what you are looking for.
  • Representation by a Professional: Consider hiring your own real estate agent, one who is working for you, the buyer, not the seller.
  • Focus & Organization: In a convenient location, keep handy the items that will assist you in maximizing your home search efforts. Such items may include:
    1. One or more detailed maps with your areas of interest highlighted.
    2. A list or file of the properties that your agent has shown to you.
    3. Paper and pen for taking notes as you search.
    4. A camera to snap pictures of homes you have toured to help you remember your favories and features you really liked.
  • Visualize the house empty & with your decor: Are the rooms laid out to fit your needs? Is there enough light?
  • Be Objective: Instead of thinking with your heart when you find a home, think with your head. Does this home really meet your needs? There are many houses on the market, so don't make a hurried decision that you may regret later.
  • Be Thorough: A few extra dollars well spent now may save you big expenses in the long run. Don't forget such essentials as having the property inspected by a professional inspector. If in doubt, have it inspected!  This includes the home itself, HVAC, radon, wood destroying insects, and more.  It's best to spend a little $ and find out NOW if there are issues.

All the above may seem rather overwhelming. That is why having a professional represent you and keep track of all the details for you is highly recommended. Please contact us directly to discuss any of these matters in further detail.

"Working with Kristi was a buyers dream come true. She handled every aspect of my purchase as if it was her own. From moment one I knew she was trustworthy and beyond capable of handling my real estate purchase with integrity. She was organized and on the ball, always available to answer any question I had."
Mariah - First Time Buyer
"As first-time home-buyers I was unsure what we’d be getting into in a housing search here in Charlotte. Specifically, the Ballantyne and South Charlotte market is so incredibly competitive, and our timeline was urgent as 2018 came to an end. Kristi reached out to me via Zillow when I expressed  interest in a home and immediately she stood a league above the multitude of the agents that tried to assist in my search. She went above and beyond to provide as much information to me as possible prior to an attempt to visit the home to make sure it would be worth my while. Statistically speaking, Kristi was AMAZING. Four home tours, two offers, and one home under contract in just a matter of about two full weeks. What I appreciated most about Kristi was the professionalism and confidence she demonstrated in her first correspondence with me and during every conversation after. She’s an agent who first wants to understand your priorities/search specifically prior to offering advice or strategy to assist. She is prompt, has a strong attention to detail, and she’s incredibly knowledgeable about not only the home buying process, but the Charlotte market from A-Z. My spouse and I are one happy couple because of Kristi’s hard work and she certainly had to jump through some hoops for us between holidays and the end of the year. I would HIGHLY recommend Kristi as a trusted expert here in Charlotte. If you’re trying to purchase a home, she has trustworthy connections and the know-how to find any additional resources you may need. Kristi, if you’re reading this, thank you so very much again!!"
Sam - First Time Buyer