A First-Time Home Buyer On: Things You Don't Know Before You Buy

A First-Time Home Buyer On: Things You Don't Know Before You Buy

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Adrienne Breaux
Feb 10, 2017
(Image credit: Heather Keeling)

Anastassia Nelson loves the Tacoma neighborhood where she bought her first house. In the heart of her hometown, it's close to both where she grew up and within walking distance to bars and a local coffee shop. "I targeted an area I was familiar with and that is also considered up-and-coming. I hope that in the end it will have great resale value when the day comes to move up to my next venture," she writes.

What was the scariest part of the the whole process?

The scariest part was dealing with a huge life step. It was by far the largest amount of money I have ever spent on anything, and depleted a substantial bit of my savings, covering the down payment and closing costs. You literally sit down and sign a mound of paperwork, and while it's all normal if you work in realty, for a first-time home buyer it's really intimidating.

What surprised you the most?

I was surprised how long it took for the right house to pop up. I house hunted for seven grueling months leading up to the discovery. I had envisioned buying a house in the spring and using the sleepy summer months to fix it up. Summer came and passed. When I finally closed on my new house in the fall it was right before the busy season at my work. It was a crazy month but in the end we made all the updates I wanted and before I knew it I was all moved in, just like that.


"Negotiate! Buyers can ask sellers for modifications. It doesn't mean it will all be accepted, but any work you don't have to tackle on your own is a plus."


(Image credit: Heather Keeling)

What is the one thing you wish you knew before buying your home that you know now?

Negotiate! Buyers can ask sellers for modifications. It doesn't mean it will all be accepted, but any work you don't have to tackle on your own is a plus. Chances are the seller knows the unlisted flaws of the property. If you mention it, there is wiggle room to fix it before paperwork is drawn up.


"A support team is everything! I dragged family to most of the houses I toured for the support. Don't be afraid to ask lots of questions."


(Image credit: Heather Keeling)

Please share some words of wisdom for other first time buyers:

Patience and persistence. A support team is everything! I dragged family to most of the houses I toured for the support. Don't be afraid to ask lots of questions. You realtor and your mortgage broker are part of your team but they are also there to work for you. If there is something that you aren't sure about or something you need explained, don't hesitate to ask for it. A good realtor and a good broker will be pleased to help you understand the process from beginning to end. Whether it be for an investment or your dream home, buying a house is a huge life decision and it's one you should be comfortable and confident in.


Thanks Ana!

See all of her beautiful home in her house tour → A Vintage Lover's First Home

And read about her estate sale secrets! → How To Get Great Deals While Having a Blast


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