Looking to buy a Central OH home? Here are five essential tips for making the process as smooth as possible.

Get your finances in order.

Start by getting a full picture of your credit. Obtain copies of your credit report. Make sure the facts are correct, and fix any problems you find. Next, find a suitable lender and get pre-approved for a loan. This will put you in a better position to make a serious offer when you do find the right house.

Find a house you can afford.

As with engagement rings, there’s a general rule of thumb when it comes to buying a home: two-and-a-half times your annual salary. There are also a number of tools and calculators online that can help you understand how your income, debt, and expenses affect what you can afford. Don’t forget, too, that there are lots of considerations beyond the sticker price, including property taxes, energy costs, etc.

Hire a Central OH Real Estate Expert

While the Internet gives buyers unprecedented access to home listings and resources, many aspects of the buying process require a level of expertise, insight, and resources you will not find surfing the web.

That’s why you’re better off using a professional agent than going it alone. Your Central Ohio REALTOR will have your best interests at heart and can help you with strategies during the bidding process. Most home seller’s have a REALTOR working for them, and so should you.

Do your homework.

Before making a bid, talk with your REALTOR about the state of the Columbus, Ohio real estate market at large. Is it more favorable for sellers or buyers?

Your REALTOR should help you look at sales trends of similar homes in the area or neighborhood. Look at prices for the last few months. Come up with an asking price that’s competitive, but also realistic. Otherwise, you may end up ticking off your seller.

Here’s where that expert you hired comes in handy. Your REALTOR should be knowledgeable, and should be able to provide guidance on the right offer price for the home.

Think long term.

Obviously, you shouldn’t buy unless you’re sure you’ll be staying put for at least a few years. Beyond that, you should buy in a neighborhood with good schools. Whether you have children or not, this will have an impact on your new home’s resale value down the line.

When it comes to the house itself, you should hire your own home inspector, who can point out potential problems that could require costly repairs in the future.

Let Me Help You Today

If you’re thinking about buying a home in the Columbus area, I would love to help. I’ve helped many Central Ohio home buyers find and buy their ideal home, and I would be honored to help you too! Contact me, REALTOR® Rita Boswell, at 614-547-3229. Let me know what you’re looking for in a home, and I’ll help you find it.

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