Congrats –making one of the most significant steps in life is not always easy! You’ve been thinking about buying your first home for ages, and know when the time has come – you feel confused and don’t know where to start.
And that’s fine – house purchase is for many a complicated process. And since this is the first time, it’s okay to feel a bit puzzled.
Luckily, we’re here to help you out. We’ve created this simple guide on buying your first home in New Jersey, so you can move in as quickly as possible.
Here are the essential steps in the process of making your dream come true – your first family home.
The first step of buying your first home in New Jersey – know what you want.
Most of the issues and misunderstandings happen when people are not sure of what they want from a house.
If you know your priorities and deal breakers clearly, it will be much easier to narrow the search and find a perfect home. That’s why it’s a good idea to write down all the requirements.
However, make sure you are realistic about this. It’s not easy to find a perfect home – you will always find some details that are not up to your alley.
However, you can make the house perfect once you move in and make all the necessary adjustments, and more importantly – create some beautiful memories.
Choose the best location in New Jersey
One of the ways to narrow your search and save time is to decide on which areas /cities of New Jersey suit your family the best. There are many ways to choose among New Jersey cities and neighborhoods.
Still, one of them is considering your work location, school location, asking friends and family about recommendations, driving around and seeing what the places you like, etc. are. NJ is a state that offers a variety of options, and we are sure there’s a perfect place for you, too.
Make sure you know your budget
Another problem with buying your first home in New Jersey can be financed. It’ s essential to know your exact budget limit, so you don’t fall in love in a home you simply can’t afford.
Therefore, evaluate your purchasing budget and look for a house within those limits. See if you’re paying all cash, or you need a loan from a financial institution.
An essential step in determining your budget is getting a mortgage pre-approval. This is one of the things you should do in advance – it’s quite easy to do, and it’s very important in the buying process.
Bonus tip: Don’t forget all the additional costs that come up when buying your first home in New Jersey. There’s down payment to be aware of (around 3%), application fees, title-based fees, appraisal, taxes, insurance, escrow fees, etc. Also, don’t forget you need to do pest and mold inspection of the house, and if there is a renovation, make sure you add it to the list.
Get help from a pro
Since you don’t have any experience with real estate, it’s good to have someone experienced to help you out. A good real estate agent will make sure you are up to date with any new laws and regulations – they tend to change quite often.
Also, they can do the search a lot faster since they are informed about current listings. And finally, paying for these services can pay off – an experienced real estate agent can help you get the best deal, as they know the real values of homes in the specified range.
Bonus tip: When it comes to professional services, moving into your new home also requires additional help from a pro.
Hiring a moving company like Gibraltar Van Lines New Jersey will ensure you don’t feel overwhelmed and stressed out – as your items will be packed and delivered safely to the new house in New Jersey.
Also, local moving companies like this know everything about NJ towns, which makes it a lot easier for you – you don’t need to think about the safety, rush hours, narrow streets, etc.
Do your homework
Even if you hire an agent, you should be informed about the current market situation in New Jersey. It’s good to read about the current real estate market trends in this state, talk to friends and family who recently purchased a house, etc.
These can really help you understand the current ‘rules’ and find the best deal for the money you have.
House hunting and making an offer
After you’ve narrowed your search with our previous tips, it will be fairly easy to find a suitable home. And once you do, it’s time to make it official.
With the help of your real estate agent, you can make an offer that should be written and delivered to the seller. Here, you have two options:
- seller accepting your offer, so you can proceed to the next step in house purchasing
- seller not accepting your offer when you can receive a counteroffer you should consider. These can continue until both sides are satisfied, or one of the parties gives up.
After a successful agreement, it’s time for the house inspection and maybe some more negotiation. Again, a real estate agent can be very helpful, since they know exactly what to look for, due to the experience in house hunting.
It’s very important to check absolutely everything in the house, and see if there’s any room for more negotiation. Also, there is a possibility to find out about some issues that can be a true deal-breaker – when finding another home seems like a better option.
The final step
Closing the deal is the final step when you’re buying your first home in New Jersey. However, even though it’s an exciting step, it’s not that fun, since there are a lot of documents to go through and sign.
You’ll need to bring certain documents, and also pay for the closing fees. You can expect to pay about 3% of the purchase price. When it comes to NJ, the average closing costs are around $2,000.
We hope this process goes smoothly and without any issues. These guidelines and the help of an experienced agent will surely make things easier, so you can find the house of your dreams as soon as possible.