13. Get a pre-approval letter
You can get pre-qualified, which simply gives you an estimate of how much a lender may be willing to lend based on your income and debts. But as you get closer to buying a home, it’s smart to get a pre-approval, where the lender thoroughly examines your finances and confirms in writing how much it’s willing to lend you and at what terms. Having a pre-approval letter in hand makes you look much more serious to a seller and can give you an upper hand over buyers who haven’t taken this step.
14. Hire the right buyers agent
You’ll be working closely with your real estate agent, so it’s essential that you find someone you get along with well. The right buyers agent should be highly skilled, motivated and knowledgeable about the area.