We're thinking about buying a house for the 1st time. Should we be doing the research for programs to help us or should the real estate agent do?

Asked by Orion1204, Henrietta, NY Mon Feb 1, 2010


Help the community by answering this question:

+ web reference
Web reference:


Steve Quintana’s answer
Steve Quinta…, Agent, Albuquerque, NM
Thu May 17, 2012
Your broker should be able to give you some lender names you can contact on this subject. The broker should also make some calls on your behalf to see if there is any loan products that are especially good for your situation.
0 votes
Jim Olive, Agent, Key West, FL
Thu May 17, 2012
As many of the other people here have indicated, BOTH you and your agent should be looking for programs to help you. But the key is, DON'T rely on anyone else for such an important activity as buying your first house. You have the biggest stake in this, and you "own" the biggest risk, so you should make darn sure you've done your homework. Good luck with this exciting new venture...
0 votes
Cathy Barton, Agent, Fairport, NY
Thu May 17, 2012
Both the agent and you can do research. You will want to get the best program possible for you.
Cathy Barton
Allison James Estates and Homes®

0 votes
Elliott R. O…, Agent, McLean, VA
Sat Jul 23, 2011
Find a good real estate agent and find a good lender that can can properly Pre-Approve you for a mortgage BEFORE you go shopping for a home; not the other way around.

0 votes
Joseph A. Ta…, Agent, Rochester, NY
Sat Jul 23, 2011
The best way is for you and your real estate agent to search for any 1st time programs to help you.
Web Reference:  http://www.JoeTally.com
0 votes
Rafael Almaz…, Agent, Glendale, AZ
Wed Apr 6, 2011
I would start by determining what type of home and where you want to live. What is the price range of homes in the area that interest you. Make a list of "must" haves in a home, and those that would be "nice to have"

Now before you get started looking at homes, it would be best to determine what you qualify for, what you could expect to pay in closing cost and determine what is your monthly mortgage payment. Some people actually qualify for a larger monthly payment than they are willing to pay. The loan officer will explain the loan options that you have based on your credit and income to help you structure your loan, which may included asking a seller to contribute towards your closing cost. Or you may find that you are not ready because of credit issues or that you may need to save more for your down payment, or that you need to pay some credit cards off to allow you to afford what you really want. Once you have determined this you and have been pre approved can than find a realtor and give him/her your parameters for of the the home you would like.
Or if you start with a realtor first then he/she will ask you what type of home or where you would like to live, they will than tell you what areas of town fit your need. Now you can than go see a lender to see if you qualify for the area you are interested in.

Ask your friends/family or those that bought a home recently for realtor and lender recommendation. Also asked what they liked and disliked about the process. Hope this helps

Most import is to start the process.
0 votes
Corinne Pett…, , Pittsford, NY
Wed Apr 6, 2011
G'day, I love working with first time buyers and I usually meet with them first so we can go over what is involved in buying your first home. This allows me to find out where you are in the process, what your goals and needs are and work out what makes sense for you. Sometimes you are ready to move forward immediatley, sometimes you might need some time to repair credit or save some extra money. Definitely discuss the process with the right Realtor first.
0 votes
Kristen Wahl, Agent, Pittsford, NY
Mon Feb 1, 2010
Hi Orion,

I agree with Bill and Don, both are important! A good real estate agent should definitely be able to point you in the direction of programs, financing, etc. that could meet your needs. In addition to the tax credit, there are plenty of grants through banks and community organization in the Rochester area. That said, knowledge is power, and it can never hurt to educate yourself about what's out there.

If you're interested, I'm actually holding a couple of first-time home buyer seminars later in February. Together with a local lender and home inspector, I'll be discussing the ins and outs of buying a home and how to take advantage of the federal tax credit. If you're interested in attending, feel free to give me a call on my cell phone at (585) 455-5524. I'd love to give you more details and sign you up!

Have a great day, and good luck with your home search!


Kristen Wahl
Web Reference:  http://www.KristenWahl.com
0 votes
Bill Eckler, Agent, Venice, FL
Mon Feb 1, 2010

The answer to your question is YES and YES!

Yes, you should be collecting as much information as possible to become an informed buyer. The first step is knowing youself by understanding your financial situation and what your perfect home will look like. Of additional assistance is understanding the maximum amount you can affort to pay for your home. This can be supported by interviewing lenders to find out what programs are available and which ones would be best for your personal situation.

Yes, your agent will be able to support you through the search, contract and closing portions of the purchasing process providing you with valuable information and simplifying the process when possible.

There is a lot to buying a home. For this reason there are a number of specialists that can help you along the way: financing, real estate professional, property inspection, title, survey, and closing. Your agent will be able to help direct you through this process.

Good luck
The Eckler Team
0 votes
Don Tepper, Agent, Burke, VA
Mon Feb 1, 2010

Learn as much as you can. While you're not likely to become an expert, all knowledge is good. And the more you have, the better. It also allows you to ask better questions of your agent: "Well, this program will cover that; what do you think?"

Meanwhile, rely on your agent for all the knowledge and experience he or she has. Don't assume that a few weeks or a few months of research will put you on a part with someone who may have 5-15 years or more of experience.

Respect your agent for what he or she brings to the table. But learn as much as you can, and feel free to ask questions, make suggestions, and challenge assumptions.

And don't just limit your research to programs that can help you--first-time buyer programs, that sort of thing. Learn as much as you can about the entire process. That'll benefit you and--really--many/most agents will appreciate the fact that you're an active, involved participant.

Good question.

Hope that helps.
0 votes
Search Advice
Ask our community a question

Email me when…

Learn more