Buying a home is a major decision. Purchasing a home will likely have an impact on your financial life for years or decades. Finding the right home for your needs and budget is key. If you are buying a home for the first time, there are a lot of things to consider. It's a big decision and there are typically a lot of factors at play. First time home buyers may be overwhelmed by the process. If you are looking to buy a home for the first time, here are three things that you should do.

Hire a Real Estate Agent

While many decide to forgo a real estate agent when buying a home, a buyer's agent can provide a lot of valuable services. If you are a first-time buyer, having a real estate agent in your corner can be especially helpful. An agent will be able to help you find properties that will work for your needs and that are within your budget. Navigating the paperwork and other details that come along with buying a home can also be challenging. A real estate agent will help you work your way through this process.

Get Pre-Approved

Another thing that you should before you buy a house is to get pre-approved for a mortgage. A mortgage pre-approval is a great way to see how much you can afford and also to show sellers that you are serious about purchasing a home. How long it takes to get a pre-approval will vary depending on your situation. Typically takes just a few days, but the range can be anywhere from three days to a few months. Your pre-approval letter will be good for anywhere between 60 and 90 days total.

Get a Home Inspection

Finding the right home can be exciting. In fact, for some it's so exciting that they skip the home inspection. However, this can be a major mistake. A home inspection is a necessity. An inspection will find any major issues that can cost you a lot of money to fix down the road. After a home inspection, you may find that you need the seller to go down in price or make certain improvements, or you may find that you need to walk away from the home entirely. The average cost of a home inspection is between $278 and $391

If you are buying your first home, there are a few key things that you should do. First, hiring a real estate agent is a must. An agent will help you navigate the sometimes complicated process of buying your first home. Next, getting pre-approved for a mortgage is also important since it will help you determine how much you can afford and also signal to sellers that you are a serious buyer. Once you decide on a house, getting a home inspection is also a must.