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Time to go Shopping

Once those preparations are out of the way, it is time to find the right property for you.

Take a Drive.

Get to know the neighborhoods, complexes, or subdivisions that most interest you.

Drive around and get a feel for what it would be like to own a property in the area. Start getting a sense of the properties available in those areas.

If you can, it makes sense to try to spend as much time as possible in the area. Rent an Airbnb so you have a realistic idea of how close it is to work, where the grocery stores are, and what features of the neighborhood you find most (or least) appealing for your lifestyle.

Narrow Your Search.

Select a few properties that interest you the most and have your real estate agent make appointments to visit them. Ask your real estate agent about the potential long-term resale value of the properties you are considering.

Working with an agent who understands the area and has worked on several transactions there can help you identify pitfalls or problems that typically arise as soon as they emerge — and a good agent can also help you understand what home features are absolutely critical and which might not be deal-breakers.

Time to Buy.

Once you have picked out the property you want to purchase, your real estate agent can help you make an offer that the seller will accept.

A good agent will investigate the potential costs and expenses associated with the new property. An agent can also help you draft your offer in a way that gives you the advantage over another offer.

Depending on the market, your offer might be accepted immediately, or it may take several tries before you’ve found a house you love at a price you can pay that the seller accepts.