First-Time Home Buyers

If you are a first-time home buyer, use the guide below for helpful hints and tips and learn how to avoid common mistakes when buying your first home in Long Beach, CA.

  • Pre-Qualification: Meet with a mortgage broker and find out how much you can afford to pay for a home.
  • Pre-Approval: While knowing how much you can afford is the first step, sellers will be much more receptive to potential buyers who have been pre-approved. You'll also avoid being disappointed when going after homes that are out of your price range. With Pre-Approval, the buyer actually applies for a mortgage and receives a commitment in writing from a lender. This way, assuming the home you're interested in is at or under the amount you are pre-qualified for, the seller knows immediately that you are a serious buyer for that property. Costs for pre-approval are generally nominal and lenders will usually permit you to pay them when you close your loan.
  • List of Needs & Wants: Make 2 lists. The first should include items you must have (i.e., the number of bedrooms you need for the size of your family, a one-story house if accessibility is a factor, etc.). The second list is your wishes - things you would like to have (pool, den, etc.) but that are not absolutely necessary. Realistically for first-time buyers, you probably will not get everything on your wish list, but it will keep you on track for what you are looking for.
  • Representation by a Professional: Consider hiring your own real estate agent, one who is working for you, the buyer, not the seller.
  • Focus & Organization: In a convenient location, keep handy the items that will assist you in maximizing your home search efforts. Such items may include:
  1. One or more detailed maps with your areas of interest highlighted.
  2. A list or file of the properties that your agent has shown to you.
  3. Paper and pen for taking notes as you search.
  4. A camera to snap pictures of homes you have toured to help you remember your favorites and features you really liked.
  • Visualize the house empty & with your decor: Are the rooms laid out to fit your needs? Is there enough light?
  • Be Objective: Instead of thinking with your heart when you find a home, think with your head. Does this home really meet your needs? There are many houses on the market, so don't make a hurried decision that you may regret later.
  • Be Thorough: A few extra dollars well spent now may save you big expenses in the long run. Don't forget such essentials as:
    1. Include inspection & mortgage contingencies in your written offer.
    2. Have the property inspected by a professional inspector.
    3. Request a second walk-through to take place within 24 hours of closing.
    4. You want to check to see that no changes have been made that were not agreed on (i.e., a nice chandelier that you assumed came with the sale having been replaced by a cheap ceiling light).

All the above may seem rather overwhelming. That is why having a professional represent you and keep track of all the details for you is highly recommended. Please contact us directly to discuss any of these matters in further detail.

See what our clients are saying:
Steve and his team are wonderful to work with. As out of state buyers we relied on Steve to be our local eyes and ears. He helped us find the perfect house and the perfect location for our family. He was professional, responsive and he exceeded our expectations every step of the way. Don't hesitate, call Steve today!
Dave G.
Steve is hands down the best realtor! He helped us find our dream forever home and we couldn’t be more grateful!! He goes above and beyond for his clients, is incredible with communication and makes the purchasing process as smooth as possible. Thank you Steve for everything!
Jenn S.
Rachel was a Godsend to us after arriving here in CA! She helped us find the perfect home for us, which was no easy feat. I wish I could give more stars because she deserves them all! Steve was so kind and checked in on us to make sure we were adjusting well, and that all of our questions were answered. The entire team is beyond kind and so patient. Thank you Beach Team! We will absolutely be using them again, if -needed, and be recommending to everyone in the area that we know.
Breanna F.
We have done several transactions, both buying and selling, with Steve and the Beach Team and cannot speak highly enough… the communication, attention to detail, knowledge of the market and expert negotiation/strategy!! We recommend Steve to every person who asks for a real estate referral. We are grateful for Steve’s knowledge and expertise in helping us with our family home!
Maddie H.
Absolutely the best service and care you could hope for! Steve and his colleagues in Long Beach went above and beyond our wildest expectations. We were truly delighted to have been represented by such a professional, attentive and considerate team.
Brilliant, Fantastic and Awesome!
Ray E.
When we first met Steve, we knew he was the man for the job. Steve jumped on board right away helping us put our house on the market. He then brought in his associate Rachel, to assist us in relocating to another place. Rachel reliable and sweet and made us very comfortable. After our opening weekend, we received many offers and with Steve’s help, the house sold. I would highly recommend The Beach Team. Steve is a great negotiator too!
Richard G.
This team is on top of it. I want to specifically point out our amazing agent - Steve Nader. He was integral in making our first home buying experience a seamless and successful one. Not only did he help us beat out 18 offers but he also helped us negotiate the price of the house down and saved us $33,000 dollars!!! We felt truly taken care of and knew we were in good hands. His rapport-building and negotiation skills are game changers! Thank you so much Steve - our new home literally checked the box for many of our requirements and preferences. You made our dreams come true in this extremely competitive landscape. Not only did we get the house that we wanted but we also got it within the budget we had proposed. This is our first home and am so grateful we had the support of the Beach team by our side.
Stephanie M.
It’s great to work with Steve and team, attention to detail and making the sell process stress free. I am looking forward to our purchase next, not the first time using Steve and team for many reasons. Highly recommended. Thank you!!
Gonzalo C.
Steve recently helped us close on our first investment property, but I met Steve two years before that. Even though I wasn’t quite ready to make the plunge yet, I found Steve to be very knowledgeable and knew I wanted to use him when I decided to buy. Once we identified a property Steve moved quickly and was not only a strong client advocate, but was also able to develop strong rapport with the listing agent to really steer the transaction our way. Bottom line, Steve is a great resource and his team of veterans were professionals throughout the process. I have referred him to friends and would not hesitate doing so again. Give Steve a call!
Timothy L.
Steve was working tirelessly for us from start to finish. We are impressed with the Beach team with Steve at it's helm. Every step of the way Steve and the team were engaged. We asked him to be an aggressive agent on our behalf and Steve showed up and then some. He got us our dream home right before Christmas in the middle of lockdowns. He was Santa for our family and a hero who helped make our dreams come true.
Kristin C.
It’s always wonderful when a team has your back! Steve Nader has his team made it so easy. This team will keep you on track and doing what needs to be done to sell and buy your new home. Our family was wowed and well taken care of! Highly recommend!
Kelly P.
Working with Steve was seamless - beginning to end. His responsiveness and availability (even during his vacation!) sets him apart. Great home. Wonderful neighborhood. Happy buyers. Five Stars all the way. Thanks Steve!
Lee B.