Hi, it’s Sue Bonzell with Terra Firma Global Partners with some tips for you as a buyer, some steps to take before you’re actually ready to buy. And number one, I always tell everybody “Please go talk to a lender.” You don’t know what you can afford until you talk to a lender. You can guess, but until you talk to a lender, you really don’t know what you can afford, and you could be just spinning your wheels. So when you’re talking to that lender, you want to make sure that you’re asking them about closing costs so you know exactly how much money you’re going to have to save up in order to do this deal, bring in some money there. You’re also going to want to talk to them about your credit score. If you’ve got some blips on your credit, now is the time to find that out and be able to repair that. Your lender can give you some suggestions. You also can talk to a credit repair specialist who could help you get you on the road so that you can get that loan. It’s not a done deal just because you have some blips in your credit. You just maybe have to wait a little longer and do a little bit of work to get that going.

Next thing you wan to do is make a list of all the things that you want in a house. Now, my list was very very long, and I didn’t get everything that I wanted, but I made a top five, and I got almost everything on that top five of the things that I wanted in a home. So you have to be very clear about what your deal-breakers are and the things that you’d be willing to forego if all of the other boxes were checked if you found those homes. I have a lot of buyers who are very very picky and they want everything, and it’s gonna be very very difficult for them to find a home. So you have to be willing to give and take a little bit, and you have to know what those deal-breakers are.

Same thing goes with where you want to live. Sonoma County is a big place, and I’ve had people say “Oh, anywhere in Sonoma County,” and then I send them something in the town of Sonoma and they say “Oh no, not Sonoma. That’s too far out.” So you have to be very specific. So again, make a list of where you might want to live and what are the deal-breakers. The top places you’d like to live and the places that really you just can’t go there. Too far from work or maybe your ex-husband lives in the area. Could be a deal-breaker. I don’t know. But make those lists and be very clear about what’s going to work for you and what’s not going to work for you.

Those are just some suggestions to get you started if you’re thinking about buying a home here in Sonoma County. I’m Sue Bonzell with Terra Firma Global Partners.