"Family Serving Families"
The first step in buying real estate is to arrange for the money. After you have signed the contract for a property is not the time to find out that you cannot get the money. If you have to liquidate other assets, do so ahead of time. If you will be receiving the money from a friend or relative, discuss it. Confirm the amount available, when it will be available, and any terms that they may want.
The majority of buyers need financing for the purchase. You should shop for your mortgage company as carefully as you shop for your new property. Ask what fees they will charge, what the terms will be, and how long it will take to process the mortgage. Ask for recommendations from acquaintances.
When you select your mortgage company, begin the application process. The mortgage company can tell you how much you can qualify to borrow and what it will cost you. The process of building your file can continue right up to the point of getting an appraisal on the property, and you will save weeks of time after you find the perfect property. You will also know the necessary price range for that property. It can be an unhappy experience to find a property that you love only to discover that you cannot get the money for it.
Second step is to decide the amenities that you need in the property, note the word "need". Consider the funds you have available and start with the "need" category. Select a good real estate broker to work for you as a "single party broker" and have them help you survey properties that meet your requirements. Then if you have enough funds available, add the "would be nice" items. Don't forget to include the type of neighborhood that you want and those important words, "location, location, location". Most important, "Buy with your head first, your heart second".