Advice and guidance for a first time home buyer looking to purchase in next 6 months?

Asked by Walid Saleh, 02135 Mon Mar 22, 2010

I am a first time home buyer. I would like some advice on how to start my real estate search and also I will need help securing financing. Condo vs single/multi-family? Mortgage options? I pay $850/month in rent now and have about $1500 in positive cash flow. Also I am considering purchasing an investment property, but I want to take advantage of the first time home buyer tax credit so I will need to live in the home for how long before I can rent it out? I am looking for a knowledgeable professional who I can work with to find a property in the Boston/Greater Boston area.

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Anna M Brocco, Agent, Williston Park, NY
Mon Mar 22, 2010
Are you an agent??? As far as the first time buyer tax credit--you need to be in contract by April 30, 2010 and close by the end of June 2010--there hasn't been any talk about an extension--see IRS link--,,id=206293,00.html
Your first step is to visit with any qualified loan officer(s) see what your budget can handle and check your credit score--after that choose an agent.
1 vote
Sedruola Mar…, , Worcester, MA
Thu Apr 1, 2010
Hi Walid,

Here are some answers to your question:

1) As a first time home buyer you are eligible to take advantage of the $8K Tax Credit
2) The first thing you want to do when starting your real estate search is get Pre-approved for a loan, then select an agent to help you in your search. If you do not know a financial professional that can help, select a real estate agent and they can suggest some names for you
3) The type of property you purchase depends on your needs and wants. That is something you'll need to discuss with your financial professional and your agent.
4) Mortgage options can be discussed with your financial professional depending on what type of property you want to purchase and for what purpose.
5) The tax credit can only be applied to a home that will be your primary residence for at least 3 years. If you plan on purchasing a multi-family in which you will occupy one of the units, you should be eligible for the tax credit. If you live in the unit for the three years and move out after that time, you will not need to re-pay the credit. However, if you do not plan to live in the property and use it only as an investment vehicle, you are not eligible for the tax credit.
6) To find a professional real estate agent to work with, ask your friends, family, co-workers etc. who they have used in the past and liked. Otherwise, do your research here online and interview a few people to see who you feel the most comfortable with.

I hope that helps with your question! Good luck in your search. You do have time to get in on the tax credit. You only have to have a signed contract by April 30, 2010, and you'll need to close by June 30, 2010.

Good luck!
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Teddy Jagess…, , Wellington, FL
Wed Mar 31, 2010
First get in touch with a good mortgage broker and get pre approved, based on the preapproval you will know what it the maximum you can pay for a home, then look for homes less than you are qualified for. Next step search properties on the internet and with a good Realtor. Have an idea of the area, school districts ect that will work for you.
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William Patt…, Agent, Boston, MA
Wed Mar 31, 2010
Hi Walid,
Good posting, here is what I think....
1) Forget the tax credit. You will, most likely, not get your purchase done in time to take advantage of it (expires soon).
2) Get pre-approved for either or both loans (owner occupant or investor). These are different loans, so discuss both options with a credible mortgage officer. (I suggest Kevin Greeley w/ NE Moves Mortgage)
3) Get out there!!!! Look look look! The best decisions tend to be informed decisions. Work with a broker that is willing to put the time in, do the research and is honest with you.

Best of luck out there!

I cover your areas, let me know if I can help.

Bill P.
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Stephen Suech, , Boston, MA
Wed Mar 31, 2010
First thing you need to do is get Pre-Approved for a mortgage. Any Realtor will want to see this before spending time showing you homes. Second thing is that you need to be under contract to purchase by the end of April and close by end of June. I am located just north of Boston in Woburn, MA and can get you started with the Pre-Approval for mortgage financing. I also have some great Realtors in Boston I could recommend.
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Tom Lynch, Agent, Great Barrington, MA
Mon Mar 22, 2010

Get moving if you want to qualify for the $8,000 first-time home-buyer credit! You must be in contract by April 30, 2010. Speak with a mortgage broker or local bank and get pre-qualified for a mortgage. They will help you determine how much you can spend. Then ask friends/colleagues to recommend a good realtor in the Boston area, That agent will help you determine what type of property may work best for you, as well as which location.

Good luck with your search!

Tom Lynch
Associate Broker, Massachusetts and New York
Berkshire Property Agents
Great Barrington, Massachusetts 01230
0 votes
Tom and Joan…, Agent, Boston, MA
Mon Mar 22, 2010

My business partner is a Boston College graduate and very knowledgeable in that area. If you decide to take advantage of the tax credit then you need to sign a purchase contract by 4/30/10, but you have until June 30, 10 to close. If you use the credit you have to live in the home for 36 months before you can more out and rent/ and or sell the home without owing money to the government. We are both certified buyers brokers and certified as in short sale and foreclosures. Please feel free to visit our website which is listed below and we are happy to assist. Best
0 votes
Dan Chase, Home Buyer, Texas City, TX
Mon Mar 22, 2010
The tax credit goes away on 4-30-2010. You either have to buy very quickly or do not expect to get it.

Look below. It gives an idea of what house prices could do in your state.

If you do decide to work with a realtor make sure you find one who knows how investment properties really work. If they do not know what a cap rate is look for someone else. It is very easy to rent and lose money.
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Dan Chase, Home Buyer, Texas City, TX
Mon Mar 22, 2010
Please consider the following blogs.

Things to do when it will be awhile before you buy a house.…
Does it really make more sense to rent or buy? Use your numbers and find out below.…
Why including the cost of gasoline when buying could save you a lot of expense.…
Ways to save for a down payment. (you need one...really)…
Things to find out about a property. It could save you from trouble.…

That is a lot to look at. A lot to consider. Some a realtor will not tell you. I hope you take the time to read and learn.
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