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Buying a home is one of the biggest purchases you’ll ever make, so it’s important to know the ins and outs of becoming a first time homebuyer in New York. From the best boroughs to the most ideal properties and the prices involved, The Empire State offers a ton of options for first timers in the market for a new home. In order to take a bit of the confusion out of the home buying equation, here is a brief guide to buying real estate in New York.
Choosing the Right Borough
Image via Flickr by raketentim
Manhattan, Queens, Brooklyn, the Bronx, or Staten Island? That’s right, choosing the ideal neighborhood for you is the first step in owning a home. Although it seems a bit daunting, making a list of the pros and cons of each neighborhood will help you narrow your search.
Break your list into columns that include everything from price and location to population and taxes. Think about what defines each borough as well. Manhattan is a metropolis, whereas Staten Island offers a suburban feel. Once you tally the pros and cons and narrow your search to one or two spots, it’s time to figure out your budget.
Taking Care of the Preliminaries
Before you go searching for your first dream home, you have to figure out exactly how much you can afford. If you are taking the home loan approach, then you’ll need to check your credit score. Your credit score has everything to do with the type of loan you’ll qualify for.
Once you know your score, it’s time to calculate how much home you can afford. This is where being honest with yourself really counts. In other words, be as realistic as possible with your finances, and don’t forget to include the down payment, closing costs, and other fees associated with the purchase.
Finding a Broker
Buying a home without the help of a real estate buyers agent or broker is next to impossible, so it’s important to find a broker that specializes in New York real estate. Buyers agents can help with everything, from finding your dream home and facilitating the sale to mortgage pre-approval and contract finalization, and every home buying need in between.
Making an Offer
One of the most exciting and nerve-racking steps of buying your first home is making an offer. Counter offers aren’t uncommon in the home buying game, so it’s important to prepare for a second and sometimes third offer that’s within your budget.
If you choose to go with a real estate professional, they will handle all the negotiations and even make counter offer suggestions. With a market as competitive as New York, multiple offers from different parties is a large possibility, so keep this in mind when it comes to your offer.
Getting the Right Mortgage
Congratulations! Once your offer is accepted, it’s time to find the right mortgage for your needs. Whether you choose an adjustable or fixed-rate mortgage, there are many tax advantages that are specific to first time home buyers in New York, so it’s important to weigh all of your financial options before choosing a home loan.
When you’re ready to call yourself a homeowner, use the information above to help you along the way.