FIRST-TIME HOME BUYERS FAQ#1 – What Is the First Thing I Need to Do to Buy a Home?

Answering First time home buyer questions from all over Los Angeles, Long Beach, Lakewood, Carson and Downey.

Step 1


Contact a Realtor FIRST before a lender. Though some may not agree and think it should be the other way around, most Realtors will ask you a few questions first and get a feel for your personality, your buying needs, and based on your answers will be able to suggest a lender that is much more suited to your particular personality and buying situation.  A lot of lenders are very well versed in many county and state programs but will sometimes have limited knowledge of new local city programs that come up in an area you most desire. A Realtor specializing in your desired area is most likely to know a lender that also specializes in first time home buyer programs in that same area.  Of course the lender choice is ALWAYS yours with very few exceptions*.   No matter your choice,  just know not all lenders are created equal.


Lenders that are used to working with first time home buyers are generally very patient and understand that first time buyers may need a little more hand-holding with the process explained to them in layman terms ….sometimes over and over again.  Most of the same lenders will also patiently go through your credit report detailing options you may have to boost your credit score if needed, which in turn can save you money on interest rates.  Now don’t get me wrong, there are some first time home buyer friendly lenders that will only work with credit ready buyers and that’s ok too, but at we do our best to provide our first time home buyer clients with several lender options of those willing to patiently walk them through the entire loan process from it’s infancy stage to it’s end.


Some lenders are much more comfortable with straight forward conventional loans and prefer not to touch FHA, CHDAP, CALHfa loans that are often considered by many lenders more tedious in nature.  There are also the “numbers lenders” that discuss loans in “lender speak” mostly talking in a numbers language that can oftentimes go right over a first time home buyer’s head overwhelming them before they have even truly started the process.  A confused or overwhelmed buyer is a stressed buyer.  There is nothing wrong with a strictly numbers lender – with the right client that can truly appreciate their style.  Again it’s my opinion the Realtor can usually get an idea of which lender would be the best fit for you the buyer.

Iphone Andi Grant First time home buyer realtor

The most important reason why I think a first time home buyer should seek a Realtor first before a lender when purchasing a home is that a Realtor will know which lenders have a track record for closing deals!  There are some lenders out there (some agents as well) that will over promise and not deliver.  It is the agents primary duty to negotiate the best price and terms for their client and get an accepted offer based on those things, but then it’s the lender’s job to pick up the baton from there and finish the deal by acquiring the funding on behalf of the buyer, securing and finalizng the purchase of the home and closing the deal.  The buyer does have some responsibility in the latter part as well.  First time home buying must consist of a strong team built up of an informed first-time buyer, an experienced Realtor and an experienced lender.   One weak link out of the three can prove costly to buyer.

When you are ready to be part of a strong first time home buying team when buying your home in Los Angeles, Long Beach, Lakewood, Downey,  Bellflower and their many surrounding cities, do not hesitate to call us at 310-508-4354 and we’ll be happy to assist you in the first time home buying process!


*Exceptions can apply when local or city first-time home buyer programs have a specific program approved “preferred lender list” that the buyer needs to choose a lender from.

 STAY TUNED FOR STEP #2 – What Documents Will I Need to Furnish to Lender?

One thought on “FIRST-TIME HOME BUYERS FAQ#1 – What Is the First Thing I Need to Do to Buy a Home?

  1. Buyers who develope a good relationship with their real estate agent will be pleasantly surprised with the quality referrals to lenders. Real estate agents, who have been in the trenches for any length of time, know all about the loan process and what they can do to safequard their client. First time buyers are unfamiliar with lenders and wouldn’t know a competent one from an incompetent one until it’s too late. I can’t tell you how many times my clients have gone with their own lender — and that’s perfectly okay — only to have glitches, hick-ups during the loan proces. Good post Andi Grant.

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