We talked to the talented Boerne, TX Real estate expert Amy Patterson about her city and buying your first home in the heart of Texas.
Q1. What’s the biggest fear you hear about from first-time buyers about the process, and how do you respond to it?
The biggest fear for potential homeowners I’ve worked with, is the fear of the unknown. From qualifying for a home loan, to attending open houses, to signing the closing paperwork, buying a home is full of firsts! One of the biggest areas of concern is making sure the buyers understand the purchasing process and what unexpected costs they may need to add to their budget so they can afford the house of their dreams.
Feeling lost in the process? Check out our new home buyers guide for in-depth guidance and step by step advice.
Finding a great realtor with connections to a great mortgage loan officer can help make the process much smoother, saving a lot of time, energy and heartache. A good agent can guide you through the pre-approval process for a loan, find the right neighborhood for your needs, and help safeguard you against major “no-no’s” including inadequate pre-closing inspections or missed opportunities to negotiate.
Q2. When you bought your own first home, what did you learn about the process?
Buying your first home can be an emotional roller coaster for even seasoned pros as negotiations can last a day or up to several months depending on the situation. For me, the most important lessons I learned was to be patient and evaluating all open options.
What helped me negotiate was going to the offer table with a few different houses, knowing the prices in the neighborhoods, and discussing additional options the seller was willing to discuss. Having alternative home options will help save you heartache in case if the inspector finds a deal-breaking issue or expensive repair or if you get outbid at the last minute by another buyer. But most of all, take a step back and enjoy yourself.
Getting to choose your perfect home is a process unlike any other, so take the time to relish it!
Q3. Is now a good time to be a first-time buyer? Why or why not?
It’s a great time to buy! The San Antonio/Boerne real estate market has only been growing with many new and beautiful communities that allow buyers to choose from luxury amenities like walking trails and community pools.
Additionally, first-time homebuyers have access to low-interest loan programs to help them find the perfect home with a reasonable monthly payment. Recently, mortgage lenders reduced the minimum credit score requirements for the FHA’s popular 3.5% down payment loan and Texas buyers have great opportunities to qualify for low- and no-down payment home loan options, such as the 100% VA loan backed by the Department of Veterans Affairs and the no-money-down USDA Rural Development Guaranteed Housing Loan Program.
Q4. Is there anything special or unique about your city or state that first timers should know about?
It’s no secret Texans love being from the Lone Star State, and for good reasons many are choosing to settle in San Antonio.
With an excellent warm climate and access to some of the most visited attractions in Texas, San Antonio is an attractive location for potential homeowners from across the country.
The area is in the midst of a booming economy many companies choosing it for their corporate headquarters and employers in the medical industry bringing tremendous amounts of business and people to the region. Furthermore, the home and land prices are still relatively low compared to similar sized cities, meaning you’ll get more for your money in San Antonio/Boerne than in other areas in the country.