The Home-Buying Process: First Steps

Aug 6, 2020 9:41:21 AM / by Brett O'Daniell

Congratulations! You've decided to begin your journey to becoming a homeowner.  We know this cab be a stressful process, and are providing some information to help you along the way. 

HomeTraq has several key services that for giving you a positive foundation for your home-buying experience. We will be assisting in your home search, and our network of lenders will be helping you through the financial process. The best part? Our network of real estate agents is ready to start showing you a home on your terms!


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Here's what you should know if you're planning to buy a house. 

Finding a home to tour

Searching for the right home is one of the most exciting parts of buying a house. It can be stressful at times, too. You can go in with certain expectations or with an open mind. Either way, you are making a huge decision, and it can carry a lot of stress.

That's why we are making it easy! Simply begin by visiting HomeTraq to view a home at your convenience! Start by choosing the property you want to see and when you want to see it. Once you click "SEE IT NOW," we will coordinate the rest. Most importantly, you can tour the home at a time that fits your busy schedule!

We also want to be sure that you find the home that is fitting your requirements. That is why HomeTraq is pulling houses from your local MLS (Multiple Listing Service) 24/7. This gives you several options for when you start your search. 

Finally, it is important that you are surrounding yourself with people who have been through the home buying process. It is a long process, involving a lot of decisions. Having someone you trust in your corner with experience buying a home can help answer any questions you may have or advise you along the way. 


Financial Factors

Finding a home to tour is half the battle. You also have to know which properties you can afford. There are a few areas to consider when finding the the houses that fit within your lifestyle.  

Credit score 

Your FICO score is on a range from <580 - 800. You always want to get your credit score as high as possible. You are presenting yourself as reliable and dependable to the lenders, so you qualify for lower rates. A lower rate means you will be paying less money on interest, allowing more of your monthly payment to go toward the principal. Higher payments on principal allows for building equity more quickly from the property. You get the point. High credit score=good for buying a home.


Look at your debt and your monthly income and compare them. This is called your debt to income (DTI). Experts suggest no higher than a 43% DTI. Luckily, some programs focus on lending to homebuyers with a high DTI. If not, you may need to start looking at options to start paying down some debt. It's okay to search for homes in different price ranges at first. Eventually, you should narrow down your search to a home that fits within your financial parameters.

Down Payment

Most people hear that you have to put down 20% for a house. That is great if you can afford it, but every situation is different. If you can put 20% down, you will be more appealing to lenders, which can help in a possible bidding war. Not everyone has the money to put 20% on their dream home! So, there are other home financing methods when you can't pay a 20% down payment up-front. Other options include grants, down payment assistance programs, or Mortgage Credit Certificates. 

Moving Forward

The first steps of the home-buying process are crucial. Finding the right home and understanding where you stand financially are essential parts of the home-buying experience. While getting off to a good start is important, there is more to buying a house than the searching. It is important to understand more concepts, such as financing and home-closing. HomeTraq will provide you with a superior search experience, all while assisting you with lender options.

Our team is always here to assist in every way we can to ensure the best home touring experience possible. Create your free account to get all of the benefits of HomeTraq. Happy house-hunting!


Topics: Pre-Qualification, house hunting, home purchase, Credit, Credit Score, homebuying

Brett O'Daniell

Written by Brett O'Daniell

Co-Founder of HomeTraq. 18+ years real estate and mortgage experience.

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