Home Buying in Philadelphia>Question Details

Jenna Shomo, Home Buyer in Philadelphia County,...

where should I start?...I looking to buy my first home in the philadelphia area.

Asked by Jenna Shomo, Philadelphia County, PA Tue Jan 18, 2011

I would like to live near good schools and in a good area where my children could go out and play. I would like a 4 bedroom home with a lot of space.

Help the community by answering this question:


If you are ready find your agent. It could take some time to find the right house, sometimes it can happen quickly, but I would start now while interest rates are still low.

1 vote Thank Flag Link Tue Jan 25, 2011
Talk to a loan officer and pre-approved then get connected with a real estate professional.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Jan 20, 2011
Hi, Jenna.

Congrats on your decision to buy a home. Since this is your first time, the best place to start would be to speak to a bank/lender on getting pre-qualified for a mortgage. This will let you know what you can/can't afford.

Once you have that in place, you should select an agent who will meet your needs; Trulia is a great place to meet different agents. If you need a mortgage/lender recommendation, please let me know and I'll help.

Lots of luck!


Timothy M. Garrity | Brown McKinney Real Estate, Co.
Real Estate Professional & Consultant

tgarrity@brownmckinney.com Email| http://www.brownmckinney.com/tim Website
215-825-2250 x 1007 Office | 267-879-2716 Mobile | 267-318-7004 Fax
1 vote Thank Flag Link Tue Jan 18, 2011
Jenna. Your price range etc needs to be looked at. If the keybis space and schools', renting may be an option too. I think everyone here articulated the importance of getting pre qualified with a lender. You as a parent should do on line evaluating of the schools. If younplan tonuse public schools and live in the city, some public schools have catchment areas. The Sade Alexander district in univ city may be worth a look

Bruce Lang
Coldwell Banker Realty
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jan 27, 2011
Hook up with a lender and get a pre-approval then find a real-estate professional to help you.
visit different area's in the city find out what area work best for you and your family.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jan 25, 2011
Interview Realtors, find one you like and the agent should be able to walk you through all the steps of buying a home.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jan 20, 2011
Good Afternoon Ms. Shomo,

The first step is to have some available funds for a down payment and/or closing costs. The closing costs can also be put in the agreement of sale and the seller can pay a portion or all of that for you. You will need to get the appropriate financing so you know how much house you can buy. You will also need a skilled real estate agent that will work on your behalf and look out for your best interests. Happy house hunting.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jan 18, 2011
As others have said, you need to find a good Realtor(R), and you need to find a lender who can pre-approve you for the type of loan that best suits your situation. I would suggest that if you are familiar with the Philadelphia area you start with finding an agent who works in the area/s where you would like to live. An experience lender will know several mortgage consultants with good track records.

By the way, 4 bedroom homes are the most difficult to find. Three bedroom homes come in all sizes and price ranges, certain areas with older homes have larger properties with 4 to 7 bedrooms. You and your agent should work together to identify the best fit for you. If you are looking in the Northwest neighborhoods, I can help you.
Kathleen Sheridan
Weichert, Realtors(R) - McCarthy Associates
Direct: 215-740-3320
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jan 18, 2011
Hi Jenna. I would love to get you started. Give me a call when you get a minute. I do have a few questions as far as specifics on exactly what you're looking for. Also, to do a property search, get school and community info as well as crime reports, visit my website.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jan 18, 2011
Hi Jenna,
I love working with first time buyers! Give me a call and we can discuss all of your needs and then get started looking at properties! My cell is 267-269-6288. My email is emilyclark@kw.com


0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jan 18, 2011
Hi Jenna, I agree with Keith. I'd be happy to assist you with a pre approval as well. After analyzing your credit, assets, income, etc you and your realtor will then know what price range you are able to look for a home in.
Always feel free to call or e-mail. Have a good week! Chad cbahnsen@mortgagenetwork.com 610 622-2212
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jan 18, 2011
Hi Jenna; Going out to play and good schools sounds like some of the great Philadelphia suburbs, most of them a short ride by train to center city- in case that is where your jobs are. Many of the surrounding suburbs have blue ribbon schools (schools that have been so designated by education experts). You are going to need a buyers agent to show you homes and to start that process early by forwarding homes to look at in the area MLS. I would love help you with this process.
Ellen Schupack
Coldwell Banker Hearthside
office- 215- 379- 2002
preferred- (cell) 215-913-8219
515 Huntingdon Pike
Rockledge PA, 19046
FAX- 215-690-4152
license #- RS 309050
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jan 18, 2011
As other stated, it is important to speak with a lender and obtain a mortgage pre-approval first. That is my specialty.
Keith Landis
Flagship Mortgage Corporation
Phone 877 334 6094
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jan 18, 2011
HI Jenna, First start with getting a pre approval, shop around but only let 1 of the mortgage companies run your credit at this time. Once you have pre approval in hand then your ready to shop. Sometimes Real Estate companies have their own mortgage rep. however we're not big fans of doing both your sale and your mortgage with the same company.

Don't buy anything new, don't be late on your credit debt. don't make any large deposits in your bank account. Keep adding to your bank account each week even if it's a small amount. keep your paystubs in order and keep a file of your bank statements, any letters of things your may have paid off in the past incase it comes up in the report. keep all information in a I want to buy a home file so that when the time comes it will be less stressful to you. Also make a copy because someone in the mortgage industry may lose it and want another copy of something it happens so being prepared will save you a great deal of headaches.

As for area well you'll have to do alittle online research and driving around and looking sorry we can't help you there since we don't know the area well enough to.

All the Best

Dave & Lisa
Web Reference: http://www.urhomerealty.net
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jan 18, 2011
Get pre-approved by a lender and then find a good a real-estate professional to help you.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jan 18, 2011
Hello Jenna
Congratulation on your decision to buy your first home. You need to work with a Realtor who understands your needs and wants regarding your first home. Please feel free to call me at your convenience
Sunny Guleria
Mega Realty LLC
Web Reference: http://www.mymegarealty.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jan 18, 2011
Hi Jenna:

Please call me at 267-243-3635 to discuss your future home. I understand schools and safety is very important to you.

Looking forward to hearing from you.

Rose DelGrande
RE/MAX Action
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jan 18, 2011
Hello Jenna,

It wasn't an easy process when the market was considered to be good but now with all of the new mortgage guidelines and rules, it's an even harder process.

The first thing you should do is find yourself a buyer agent. If you are not aware, a buyer agent is only your agent and will work hard to protect only your best interests and when you are buying a home, that is extremely important. Having a buyer agent who is an expert negotiator is also extremely important because they will be negotiating the price of your home. If they are not comfortable saying no or with confrontation, you will be the one who suffers.

There is so much that needs to be explained to you before you go look at homes. I always provide a buyer counseling session to my buyers. I go over the entire home buying process and answer all questions. Not every Realtor will do this however.

After you hire your own buyer agent, your Realtor can then assist you with finding a mortgage consultant. It is important to find a mortgage consultant who will work with as closely as your buyer agent will be working with you. Many mortgage lenders will not attend settlement and you definitely want your mortgage consultant to be with you on one of the most important days of your life. The mortgage consultant and buyer agent will work as a team to get you to the settlement table.

There are so many great homes available so you do not have to worry about that. As for the neighborhoods, Realtors are not allowed to make opinions of areas. I always suggest to my clients that they drive around the homes we find at different times of the day and night as well as different days. You should also visit the local police station to ask about crime statistics.

There is so much more and I can keep going on and on. I'd love to talk with your further about your goals. Feel free to email me at reneeporsia@mac.com or contact me directly at 215-669-0589.

I also have a blog that you might find very helpful with video. http://www.reneeporsia.com

Renee Porsia
Associate Broker
RE/MAX Action
(215) 669-0589 Direct
(215) 358-1100 Office ask for Renee
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jan 18, 2011
I am a Realtor who works in the Philadelphia area. I do offer first time home buyer counseling if you are interested. Feel free to contact me if you would like to get together and I can discuss the entire process with you. It can be complicated and overwhelming, but I have the expertise to help you. I work with first time home buyers all the time. It is actually the best part of my job!
Kerry Maginnis
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jan 18, 2011
First place to start for any home purchase

#1 - Contact mortgage broker for loan approval
#2 - Choose a Realtor
#3 - Provide Realtor copy of your lender approval letter authored by loan officer
NOTE: Letter provides the guidance on how agent can work on your behalf
#4 - Know what type of home, room count and etc that you would want and communicate to your buyers agent
#5 - Never purchase real estate without a Realtor represent you TOOOO MANY scams you can have loss of your life saving AND GET SUED

Lynn911 Dallas Realtor & Consultant, Loan Officer, Credit Repair Advisor
The Michael Group - Dallas Business Journal Top Ranked Realtors
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jan 18, 2011
Hi Jenna,
I am a full time Realtor in Philadelphia. I have lived here for 37 years. I would be happy to help you navigate your way through the Philadelphia area and answer any questions that you may have.

Please contact me.

Joan LaMarchesino
Philator.com Realtors
267-295-7742 Direct
267-872-1698 Cell
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jan 18, 2011
Hi Jenna,

Sally's right. The best place to start is with a good Realtor and a good lender. I start off all home buyers with a meeting wherein I overview the home buying process and provide my clients with outlines of what to expect while learning about their home buying goals. I also have three excellent mortgage lenders to recommend.

Fee free to contact me for more information:

215 500 2981
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jan 18, 2011
Jenna, you should by interviewing/finding a Realtor. A Realtor is one of the greatest resources to a first time homebuyer including being able to help you find a mortgage lender to get preapproved. 75% of my clients are first time homebuyers! Feel free to call or email me to start asking any and all of your questions.

Nikki David
RE/MAX Centre
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jan 18, 2011
Hi Jenna --

I am a Mortgage Advisor in the Phila area. I have been assisting !st time home buyers for almost 12 years. I would be happy to walk you through the home buying process. We start with what you are comfortable paying each month, the area you want to purchase in then move forward with getting you Pre-Approved. Call me at 610.291.1460 and I can answer questions you have and let you know more about the Process as a whole.

Maura McDonnell
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jan 18, 2011
I think sitting down with an experienced real estate agent who understands first time buyers and is familiar with the neighborhoods you're interested in is a great first step. They can usually point you in the right direction in terms of lenders will be good for you to work with too.


James Yoakum - Realtor, SFR
Brown McKinney Real Estate
1733 Spring Garden St., 3rd Floor
Philadelphia, PA 19130
office: 215-825-2250 x.1002
cell: 267-496-7739
fax: 610-910-3046
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jan 18, 2011
Hi Jenna,

Are you looking in the city or the burbs? No matter which, you can go to http://215re.com to search property.

Also, you should get preapproved for a mortgage. Go to http://theloanapp.com for a free preapproval.

You can call me at 215-852-4469 to go over details.


Web Reference: http://215re.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jan 18, 2011
Have you talked to a lender yet? First step is to get prequalified for a mortgage (unless you're paying cash). Then find a Realtor. I'm sure you'll get a lot of responses from agents on here offering their services. You can also ask around - friends, family or co-workers may be able to refer you to a good agent. If you need the name of someone in your area, let me know. I'm happy to help. Good luck!
Web Reference: http://www.sallygrenier.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jan 18, 2011
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