A man's hands handing out a pencil and holding a Scottsdale home buying contract.

This is an uncredited guest post. If you are planning to buy a house, you are in for a real rollercoaster of emotions! Home buying can be thrilling, nerve-racking, and exciting all at once. Whether you've done this a couple of times or you are a first-time home buyer, it's a fact that the whole process can be confusing. So if your emotions make you feel overwhelmed, perhaps it's time to take a step back and seek the necessary information to ease your stress. We've created a list to answer your question about how to make the home buying process less stressful. Here are the ways to minimize stress when searching for your dream home.

Tips on how to make the home buying process less stressful

Home buying is one of the most important milestones in one's life and a reason to celebrate. So, why on earth is it also one of the most stressful times?

Both house buying and changing homes are listed on the stress list since the processes are likely to affect your tension levels. The good news is that there are essential steps to reduce negative emotions during this period of your life.

However, once you've found the one, you will most likely forget all the bad and enjoy the thrill of having a place to call home. To help you get to this step, here are the "first of firsts" that you should consider:

  • get pre-approved for your mortgage
  • know what your want, but be flexible
  • hire a real estate agent
  • be aware of the additional, not-so-evident costs
  • sort your documentation out
  • submit an offer and wait
  • close the deal

Get pre-approved for a mortgage

This is the ideal first step to take. You should contact professionals, mortgage brokers or lenders, to help you determine the maximum amount of money you can get for your dream home purchase. This way, you will know which houses and within which price range to look for and remain realistic when it comes to your financial situation.

Pre-approval depends a lot on your record and credit scores. That's why you need to make sure you are paying all your bills on time. This way, you are looking toward a better interest rate. Also, keep your bank statements and income records on hand since lenders will require this information.

Know what your want, but be flexible

If you don't determine what you want from your house, you will spend an enormous amount of time looking at homes that don't match your needs. Therefore, it would be best if you were specific about your requirements. Some of the criteria to consider are:

  • one-level or multilevel house
  • the number of bedrooms and bathrooms
  • the exterior type
  • house type (townhouse, condo, single-family house)
  • square footage
  • distance to work or shopping places
  • school districts
  • neighborhood

Having all of these things listed will be of enormous help to both yourself and your real estate agent. Nonetheless, remember that no house is a perfect house, and you probably won't find a carbon copy of the one you listed. But, of course, this doesn't mean you won't find the one with the majority of this on your list, so it's important to remain flexible and realistic.

Additionally, even if the home doesn't fit your needs in its current state, it doesn't mean that you should dismiss it. For example, if you fall in love with a house that lacks storage space, you can always rent out a unit to keep your excess belongings. However, the moving team behind Centennial Moving argues that, when it comes to storage, quality units ensure safety, so make sure to do your research and find the best facility for your items.

Hire a real estate agent

Another critical step that will make the home buying process far less stressful is hiring a reputable real estate agent. By discussing your requirements and desires with your agent, it will be easier to meet your priorities while staying within your budget.

A woman sitting with her Scottsdale real estate agent.
Your real estate agent is of invaluable help during this important period.

The right real estate agent has a lot of experience and education in the field. They will give your professional advice, help you with the paperwork, maybe even recommend adding certain contingencies and save you precious time.

Be aware of the additional costs

You should be aware that there is a lot more to pay when buying a house than just the sticker price. The monthly payment is made of the principal (the amount you borrowed), interest (what you pay your lender for giving you the loan), taxes, and insurance.

Another type of cost that awaits is the closing cost. So, again, be sure to ask for an estimate up front and make sure you know what you are paying and why.

Once you've bought the house, these are the costs to expect: moving company, home improvements, repairs, tools, utilities, lawn and garden equipment.

Sort your documentation out

Another vital step is to have your documentation ready. Your lender will give you a list of documents required. Some of them are driver's licenses, income statements, bank statements, etc. Getting these things in order and ahead of time will save you time and nerves!

Four grey binders in a pile.
Make a checklist of the documents you need and start by checking the points.

Submit an offer

Once you've encountered a house you like, it's time to make an offer. It is typically made via a purchase agreement. One way to make the home buying process less stressful is to work with a real estate agent on this one. They will explain all the purchase agreement details to you. Then, take the agreement home, study it well and sleep on it. Once you are sure and satisfied with the offer you've made, it's time to sign the dotted line.

Close the deal

The process doesn't end here quite yet. Once the seller accepts your offer, the waiting to close the deal starts. Again, go through each step of the deal closing with your real estate agent. This way, you will know what to expect, as well as be mentally and emotionally prepared. Once the deal is closed, it's celebration time!

The takeaway on making the home buying process less stressful

It is entirely normal to feel a mix of emotions. One moment you might feel relieved to have decided to stop renting and are ready to buy. The other moment, you might feel afraid you won't qualify for a loan or find the house of your dreams.

A family of four hugging in their new Scottsdale house.
The feeling of owning a house makes the stress go away, even for a moment.

All of these feelings are normal. However, the key to knowing how to make the home buying process less stressful is to anticipate your emotions, understand them and set rational expectations. Then, after going through the process, you can share your success story with others and encourage other homebuyers to start the adventure.

Posted by Judy Orr on
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