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Sweet Baby Jesus, We're Doing This Thing: A Buyer's Guide

Buying your first home is both nerve-racking and SO exciting. But what exactly are you in for? Check out our Buyer's Guide below to find out.

Pre-Approval vs. Pre-Qualification

The first step in your journey should be getting pre-approved for a loan. This means working with a mortgage broker to review your finances and find out how much you can realistically afford.

Pre-approval is the baby step before pre-qualifying, where you actually apply for a mortgage and receive a commitment from a lender in writing.

Pre-qualifying is very important - especially in rocky economic times (hello, Covid). The process of pre-qualifying indicates to Sellers that you are a serious (and qualified) Buyer. Indicating your interest in this way will encourage Sellers to work with you over Buyers who aren't qualified, and will make the rest of the process much more smooth.

We maintain a rolodex of screened vendors, to ensure that anyone we work with are entirely qualified, informed and competent when it comes to your needs and values. If you need a referral for a great lender, just say the word and we will be glad to share our contacts with you.

Must-Haves & Would-Likes

The kitchen island is a must - but is the walk-in closet? (My answer is "yes," but this isn't about me.) Need to be near yoga on the bluff or the LGBT Center? How about shopping, or a particular school? That damn juice bar has to be down the street. It just does.

Everyone's needs (and wants!) are different, and narrowing these down into what you "need" and what "would be nice" is a crucial step in snagging the home that will truly give you everything you need - and

much of what you want. So grab your green juice and a pen, and write two lists or cross out what you can live without. Then take to our IDX site and see what's out there for you! This is the fun part.

This realistic approach can really come in handy when you are comparing properties for what best suites you and is within your means, without getting dazzled or dazed in the process.


Much of a Buyer's initial work can be done independent of an agent. This includes getting pre-approved/pre-qualified, deciding on must-haves and would-likes, and checking out what's on the market online. A good agent will encourage you to do all of these things when buying your first home, and make themselves available to you every step of the way, so you are truly empowered and informed throughout the process of finding your nest.


Working With an Agent

Then comes the Agent. The Agent has access to the Multiple Listing Service (MLS), where homes are listed for sale for all agents across the nation to see. Sites like Zillow and Trulia syndicate data from the MLS, meaning they pick up new data and share it with you as a consumer. The MLS is the ultimate and most accurate source of new homes for sale, and your Agent will have direct access to new listings matching certain criteria they've set just for you.

The Agent will share their MLS findings with you, and you can sort through the listings to see what most interests you. With a quick turnaround, the Agent will be able to schedule private showings, coordinate visiting Open Houses with you, and narrow down the search together to get you closer to your dream home.

Once it's time to put in an offer on a home, the Agent will draft the offer with you, present it to the Sellers, and begin any negotiations on your behalf. They will manage the entire process for you, from initial offer to final walk through, so that you don't get tied up in managing details like contingencies, inspections and any issues that may arise in the process.

Wherever it is you're looking to lay your roots, it's essential you have someone who truly understands your needs and values to represent you when finding your first home. It is also crucial that you are empowered throughout the process, as involved or not as you'd like, and can trust in the person representing you. The best part? Technically, the Seller pays for BOTH Agents. So you just worry about the mortgage and loan, we got the rest.


At Vechil Real Estate, we pledge to champion the people in every exchange and support the community with every transaction. You can count on us for a communicative, collaborative and conscious real estate experience - every time. If you are ready to embark on your home-buying journey, and are looking for someone to facilitate a seamless experience for you that gives back to the community, it would be our honor to work with you in finding your first home. Give us a call at 562-966-1139, send us an email at or head over to our Say Hey page to send us a message. We're always here, and ready to co-create the home of your dreams.


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