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Have you ever known a friend or relative looking for work who said "Any job will be fine"? Ever been behind an embarrassed shopper who was informed that his credit card limit had been exceeded?

In the first case, the job seeker had no goals or objectives - no special job in mind. In the second case, the embarrassed shopper was unaware of his own financial limitations. So how do these examples relate to buying a home?

Once the decision has been made to buy a home, the first step is setting a goal. What style home is preferred? How soon will the purchase be made? What age home is ideal? How large a home is the right size? What amenities should it offer?

Get the picture? If a home buyer doesn't have a clear picture of the right home before beginning the search, it is highly unlikely that a purchase will result. As someone once said, "If you don't know where you're going, you'll probably end up somewhere - else."

The wise homebuyer will also determine his or her financial limits before beginning a home search. Imagine finding the perfect home, then being informed that you do not qualify to buy it. Visit a mortgage lender first, get a loan commitment, then make your buying decision with the confidence that the home will be yours.


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