3: Understand the Offer Process
You've found the house of your dreams, and you're ready to start the process of making it your own. Well, that all begins with making an offer. While there's no way to know exactly what type of offer the seller will accept, when making your offer you should take into account several things. Knowing how long the house has been on the market, the asking price's position related to comparable properties in the area, and even the number of available comparable properties in the neighborhood can make a difference. Realize that negotiation is usually inevitable, so be sure to leave a little leeway within that first offer.
Make sure that your offer includes contingencies such as financing and property inspections [source: Brown and Tyson]. You don't want to be bound to purchase a home if you don't have enough money. You also don't want to purchase a home that has a cracked foundation or some other deal breaker without having the option to go back to the negotiation table.