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The First-Time Home Buyer Journey

A step-by-step guide to buying your first home or condo.
Step 1

Review Your Finances

First things first—review your finances to see if buying a home is a realistic possibility and then decide how much home you can afford based on your income, debt, and how much of a down payment you can make. Tools and content throughout Once you have all your financial documents in place it’s time to meet with a lender. It’s here that you’ll decide which mortgage options to consider, talk about first time home buyer programs that you might be eligible for along the way, and also compare mortgage rates and fees. In addition, we’ll also be able to answer and and all questions you may have about the process at this point too!

Step 2

Meet With a Lender

Once you have all your financial documents in place it’s time to meet with a lender. It’s here that you’ll decide which mortgage options to consider, talk about first time home buyer programs that you might be eligible for along the way, and also compare mortgage rates and fees. In addition, we’ll also be able to answer and and all questions you may have about the process at this point too!

Step 3

Find a Real Estate Agent

After we’ve determined your mortgage rate and how much you can afford we’ll then pair you up with a real estate agent who matches your individual needs as a home buyer. As you might expect, different real estate agents have different specializations, and our network of local real estate pros ranges from those who work directly with first time home buyers to those who are experts at helping buyers buy a multifamily or investment property. 

Step 4

Start Your Home Search

Although the process can sometimes seem daunting, searching for the right home or investment property is often the most enjoyable part of the home buying experience. How quickly we find and secure a place that’s perfect for you usually depends on available inventory, current market conditions, and how prepared you are to buy. Luckily for you, our team of lending and local market pros will always put you in the best position possible to meet and exceed all your home buying goals. 

Step 5

Make an Offer

What happens when you finally find the right home? Along with help from your trusted real estate agent, you’ll decide what feels appropriate and submit a formal offer letter. From there, you’ll receive one of three responses: an acceptance, a counteroffer, or a flat out denial. Regardless of how the negotiation process goes, keep calm and have confidence in who you’re working with. 

First-Time Buyer Tips

Buying a home or condo for the first time? Find out how to prepare and what mistakes to avoid using our list of first-time home buyer tips. 

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Best Time To Buy

Find out when the best time to buy is along with other great first time home buyer tips. 

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Money Saving Ideas

Saving money to buy your first home can be a challenge but we’ve devised a list of tips & tricks that might help you reach your financial goals faster than you think. 

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Closing Costs Explained

What are closing costs and how much will you have to pay when buying a home? We take a deeper dive into the numbers behind closing costs. 

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Mistakes To Avoid

If you don’t have any experience buying a home or investment property, the process might seem overwhelming. But using our guide of what mistakes to avoid, your experience should be smooth and efficient. 

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Illinois Programs & Grants

Information about first time home buyer programs and how you might qualify for down payment assistance, lower interest rates, and more. 

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Get Your Rate

Recent Trends

The interest rates you see here are an average of the published annual percentage rate with the lowest points from a sampling of major national lenders. Contact us about what your interest rate might look like or click below to learn more about how interest rates are calculated.

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