Tips for First Time Home Buyers

    Yay! Congratulations on buying your first home! We home its one of the homes for sale in Wichita, but these pieces of advice should be fairly universal regardless of what market you’re in. After the crash of 2008 (Lovingly called “Armageddon” around the office) many would-be first time home buyers looked at the pain some were going through and thought “Not for me.” That’s completely understandable. Witnessing ’08 from the outside (And the inside) was a real mess and has left many feeling confused or at best wary of what real estate looks like for them. A house, a HOME, is an emotional thing – and it should be – but let’s look at some things that are non-emotional first.


    They don’t lie. They are what they are.

    Mortgage Credit Availability IndexJPG


    The “bubble” that burst in ’08 wasn’t a “Property” problem – it was a lending problem. The higher the mortgage credit availability index is the easier it is for people to get a loan. Obviously, at the left of the chart from 04-07 things were pretty relaxed. Banks, due in part to aggressive government encouragement, were giving loans to borrowers with credit histories and incomes that just didn’t make sense. Example: Someone with no money in the bank, loads of credit card debt, and a poor history of paying on time is a bad risk for the bank. But, alas, as the above graph demonstrates – it was around 9x as easy to get a mortgage then. Not to say it’s impossible to get a mortgage now, the process is more transparent than ever. That being said, banks wised up to their mistake and dialed it back a bit.

    The first step is to get pre-approved with a great local lender. We love working with our preferred lenders who can offer great advice both on mortgages and on personal finance. A more complete approach! It’s just better that way.

    Past numbers, there are several things to keep in mind while you’re looking. The first of which is to get with a great real estate agent and sit down to get a great game plan together so that you’re both on the same page. He or she will have access to‘s exclusive instant notification home hunting system so that when a house that matches your criteria hits the market you’ll know about it before some agents even will! What an advantage!

    Lastly, it can be easy to pick the prettiest house and get in a bidding war just because a seller staged well. (Do your best to) keep emotions in check and make sure that you can see yourself staying in the home for a number of years. Does it REALLY meet your criteria? Any repair items that you’re not giving enough weight to? Due your due diligence and be honest with yourself. If you’re still in love, pull the trigger and welcome to home ownership!

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