How to Find the Perfect Home for You and Your Budget Series

Taking that first step to buy your home can be scary and daunting. As a first-time (or a seasoned) buyer, you may think, “Can I really afford a home that I’ll love and that will meet my needs?”

It can be done. And I can show you how!

In my series, How to Find the Perfect Home for You and Your Budget, you’ll learn how to incorporate my strategies with your own to find a home that is the right fit for your lifestyle, needs … and your budget. 

You’ll know what to do every single step of the way and avoid having that dreaded buyer’s remorse.  

Keep in mind, that your first home and even your current home, is and will be most likely the stepping stone for your next home. You want to do this right and also set yourself up to be financially able to move up to the next home if and when the time comes. 

Here’s a weekly run-down of my “perfect home”-buying formula:

Week 1 — 12 Questions to Ask Yourself Before You Step Foot in an Open House

Before you do anything else, you must evaluate your wants and needs for a home. It’s time to brainstorm and figure out what’s “under your hood” when it comes to what is best for you and your family. This will be the very first, but most important, step on your home-buying journey. Your answers will set you on the right path!

Week 2— Are You a “House” or a “Location” Person?

It’s time for some more self-evaluation and to determine what’s most important to you in your daily life at home. Usually people tend to lean toward one or the other — being a “house person” or “location person.” The reason we ask this is that it’s rare for any buyer to find their dream home in their dream location within their budget. That’s why you need to figure out what’s more important to YOU and where you’re willing to compromise. 

Week 3 – The 3 Steps Most Buyers Skip When Buying a Home

There’s a very specific formula I use with clients to make sure they end up with the house that best fits their needs and budget.  It requires some patience to make sure things are done right. This is the biggest financial decision of your life, and it should be done slowly, steadily and with precision.  This article will go over the 3 steps you need to take that can lead you to the right home for you budget.  

Week 4 – How to Finance Your Home Purchase

Most buyers are newbies when it comes to mortgage loan options, interest rates, credit scores and more.  Did you know you need to get pre-approved for a loan BEFORE you can start looking at homes with your agent? This article will go over why it’s important to get the lender and pre-approval process done correctly so that you can move forward quickly if you want to make a serious offer on a home.

Week 5 – Putting It All Together

These three factors – budget, location, and your criteria for a home — are intertwined and play a key role in finding the “perfect” home for you. This article explains how these three factors influence each other in your search for a home; and how you “put it all together” is essentially your roadmap for house hunting. Going through this process and understanding how they’re linked will help you make the right decision on a home.

Week 6 – What You Need to Know About Buying for Schools 

Kids or no kids, living in a neighborhood with excellent schools can be beneficial to homeowners. For those of you with school-aged kids, “moving for schools” will most likely dictate the location of you next home. But, remember that fair housing laws prevent your real estate agent from offering any opinions on the quality of the schools or school districts.  This article is a great starting point on how you can best search for a home if a school district is your #1 priority.

Week 7 – “As Is” Home – Deal or No Deal?

Some buyers may be tempted to buy an “as is” home if the price is right to get into a neighborhood they love.  You do need to tread carefully though since there can be vast differences on the state of that “as is” condition.  Remember that the seller has no intention to do any repairs before selling it. This article will discuss the steps you should take if you plan to make an offer on an “as is” home, and how to determine if it’s a deal or no deal. 


Can you believe it is February 2024 already!

Here is what we talked about in last month’s Newsletter.
📌  4 Little Known House Hunting Tips

📌  Is 2024 The Year To Buy A Home?

📌  What Never To Do Before Buying a Home

📌  How To Go With The Flow Of The Market – Successful Tactics For Buyers

Do you have a specific topic related to real estate that you’d like us to discuss? Let me know by sending me a quick email here! 😉


I'm Catherine and I help international buyers and sellers reach their real estate goals!
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Hi, there!

I'm Catherine Olive and I got into real estate to help foreign nationals, expats and international students navigate the home buying and selling process to avoid challenges I faced due to lack of knowledge. My goal is to make sure that I help you settle and make owning a home in the U.S. a reality.

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