Buying your first home can be a scary, intimidating experience. If you don’t know anything about being a first time home buyer, it’s hard to know where to start. Buying a home is a big purchase, and it’s a decision you shouldn’t take lightly.

However, if you think you’re ready for this next step, there are some things you should know about that will help you feel more comfortable navigating the real estate world.

Here are some of our favourite tips for any first time home buyer to help you get prepared and make the most out of the process.

Figure Out Your Budget First

Don’t start looking at homes until you’ve been pre-approved for a mortgage and know what your budget entails. Otherwise, you might be looking at dream homes that you can’t actually afford. This disappointment can limit your ability to find the right home.

Be Smart With Your Down Payment

The more money you put down, the more manageable your mortgage costs are going to be. Consider how much you can afford to add to your down payment while still factoring the costs that are associated with buying a home.

Differentiate Between Needs and Wants

Your first home isn’t always going to be your dream home. However, one of the first steps to buying a house is to sit down and make a list of the features you need or want. It’s important to differentiate between the things you can or can’t live without. Sometimes your budget or housing options might require a compromise.

Don’t Let Your Emotions Get in The Way

It’s easy to find a house and fall in love with it, but many new home buyers fall into the trap of letting their emotions control their actions. Sometimes this results in paying more than necessary or overlooking an important detail that could bring up unexpected issues in the long run.

Factor in The Real Cost

You might have been approved for a certain mortgage. But that doesn’t mean you should spend the entire budget on your home. There are many other costs you need to consider that you should have money set aside for. For example, there are closing costs, taxes, renovations, insurance policies, and inspection fees.

Use a Real Estate Agent

As a first time home buyer, you don’t need to do this alone. Work with a real estate agent who understands your situation and has been in your shoes before. They’ll make sure you fully understand not just the first steps to buying a house, but everything that comes next as well.