Posts Categorized: New Homeowner

How to Prepare for Your First Home

Preparing to purchase your first home can be overwhelming. From having to be confident in your creditworthiness to finding the right agent (or not) and home; it can all cause serious anxiety for first-time buyers. At ZYYAH, we make it our business to cheer our community on every step of the way when it comes to owning a home. We’ve compiled a list of a few things you can start doing right now to prepare for and work towards the purchase of your first home.

We hope this helps take the edge off and encourages you to take the next (or first) step in owning your very first home!


When you’re applying for a home loan, it’s crucial you have your finances and credit in good condition. For first-time homebuyers, this means having at the very least a 580 credit score (suitable for some FHA loans) or next best a 620 to start. These scores will get you a home loan secured at a rate that fits your financial picture. The higher your score, the better your interest rates, so it’s best to check your credit report and begin cleaning up hiccups in your report as soon as possible.


You don’t have to be filthy rich to become a first-time homeowner, so don’t fret. But you do need to have money in the bank to cover potential down payment and closing costs and to show lenders you’re in good financial space. Though your down payment will depend on your mortgage and lender, it’s best to begin saving as soon as you can. Some lenders only require as little as 3% down for buyers with excellent credit and many first-time homeowners can secure a 3.5% requirement for their down payment. Begin thinking about how much you intend to spend on a home or utilize a free calculator to assess how much home you can afford so you have a benchmark for saving.


Before you begin shopping for homes, you need to know just how much you can afford. That’s where your lender or agent comes in. If you have a real estate agent in mind, reach out and let them know you’re ready to begin the loan pre-approval process. Many agents already have a list of lenders they work with directly and may be able to secure you a good rate working alongside them. If you don’t have an agent or decide to decline, begin looking at lenders nationwide, locally, or at your current financial institution to start the pre-approval process. Once you know how much you’re working with, it’s far easier for you or your agent to know where you should begin looking for homes.


Many states and cities have programs in place that offer a wide variety of incentives to first-time buyers like lower interest rates, closing cost assistance, or even down payment assistance. You’ll want to look up programs in your area you qualify for and reach out. Many programs even provide tax breaks to first-time buyers.


Now that you’ve taken these steps, you’re prepared to get looking for your perfect home. Whether with a friend, alone, or with an agent, it’s best to keep your options open. Not only should you shop around for the best mortgage rates and programs, but you’ll also want to stay open to finding gems when you get to the point of looking for your new home.

Purchasing your first home is an exciting and sometimes stressful time. There’s a lot to accomplish before you can get to the more glamorous parts like looking at homes. But once you start getting everything working towards your goal of homeownership, you’ll find that, while sometimes overwhelming, it’s within your reach.

So what are you waiting for?! Start getting your finances together, searching for first-time homeownership programs, saving money, and carving your unique path to the home you’ve been dreaming of. And when you’ve found that home, our team at ZYYAH will be ready to provide the best insights to support your home.

Stay on the lookout for the release of the ZYYAH app so you can get personalized insights and suggestions straight to your phone!

Checklist for New Homeowners

If you’re a new homeowner with little experience managing your home, here is a checklist curated especially for you. At ZYYAH, we’re all about empowering homeowners so you can step out confidently on your own. When it comes to your home, we want you to be the expert. Keep reading to see if you’ve tackled everything on the list!

  1. Get an Inspection – This may be best practice for many real estate agents, but you’d be surprised how many first-time homeowners forgo the inspection process. Be sure your agent contacts a trusted professional to complete your inspection or that whomever you choose completes a thorough inspection from the inside out.
  2. Ensure Home Safety – Sometimes swapping locks is not enough. Be sure to scout for a reliable home security system that covers all bases of the home and offers swift correspondence in the case of an emergency. Ask your agent or close friends and family about their experience with their providers and lean toward one with sound safety protocols.
  3. Plan Out Your Home Maintenance – It’s wise to know what all will need tending to in and around your home. When it comes to maintaining your home – the HVAC, the pool, the fridge, and more – there’s a lot that goes into keeping your home running smoothly. Create a list of all of your appliances or try out our app, so that you have a bird’s-eye view of your assets and what needs close care.
  4. Update Your Address Across the Board – Update your address with the post office and spread the word to your loved ones that you’ve moved. Don’t forget to contact your retailers, creditors, or insurance providers and share with them as well!
  5. Secure Local Health Providers – Dentists, primary care providers, optometrists, oh my! There’s a lot to do when living in a new community. Be sure to ask around and do your due diligence on local providers who are unique to you and your family’s needs.
  6. Get to Know Your Local Contractors – Reliability is key when it comes to getting things done at home. If you know you’ll need a landscaper, repairman, or dogwalker, hop on the net or ask your neighbor if they have anyone they can recommend. Create a list of reliable contractors who you can call on anytime.

With ZYYAH, we take all the information you input into the app to provide unique insights and recommendations for you to properly manage your home! Join our mailing list below to get first access to the app today and explore all the ways in which our tool utilizes your homeowner info to recommend home improvements, share maintenance tips, take inventory, and more!

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