how to: buy a home

Ready for a new nest? Whether you’re looking for your very first place, or it’s time for an upgrade, we’ve got guides on renting or buying a home that will help ease you through the process. Start with the basics -- condo, co-op, or house? Our home buying help will give you the pros and cons of every option. After deciding what you want, you’ll need to settle on where to live. Our tips on how to find a home will help you pick the right neighborhood and even tell you how to give it a test drive! If you’ve already narrowed in on a neighborhood, you’ll want a real estate agent, and we’ve got the questions you must ask before you hire one. Once you’re on the house hunt, our Q&A can help you through every step of buying a home. From dealing with agent fees, how much to bid, managing mortgages -- even when it’s smarter to rent. You’ll find home buying help for every sticky situation. In addition to tips on buying a house, we’ve also got advice on selling your old one. Take a peek at our advice on organizing an open house, the dos and don’ts of selling it yourself, and our handy selling your home checklist. Our tips on buying a house will take you right through to the end, from dealing with inspections to making an offer. Once you’re ready to make your move, check out our moving checklist and the first things you should do in your new space. Welcome home!

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Q&A: How can we agree on a house?

Q.

My husband and I are thinking of buying, but we can't agree on what kind of house we both like. What can we do?

A.

The Nest Q&AOne of you wants the city, the other likes the burbs. Or you're both battling on the size you'd like or how much home you can really afford. Whatever the squabble, the only way to solve it is by sitting down and making a list of your top five priorities. Consider location, house size, house condition, and how long you plan to live there. Roughly half of homeowners move again within eight years of buying a home. With this in mind, each of you might be able to budge a little on your list, considering this first purchase might be more of an investment than a dream home.

Talk over each point to see if there are areas where either of you can give a little. Things like house size and taxes will be easy to figure out by tallying what you can afford. But thoughts about location and other investment possibilities might mean discussing long-term plans for family and finances. It also can't hurt to talk to friends who've recently made big moves and ask if they have any tips or even regrets. Still can't agree? Go to open houses that fit the criteria on each of your lists, and see what happens. You might be surprised at what you're willing to compromise on.

-- The Nest Editors

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