Buying a home is a huge step, and it’s one that represents the most significant investment that many people will ever make. Whether you’re a first-time homebuyer looking for the best possible deal or a growing family in search of an upgrade, you’re bound to appreciate these cash-saving tips.

Shop Around for Loans

It can be very encouraging when you get an attractive loan offer, but resist the urge to leap into an arrangement with the first bank you consult with. For one thing, you might be able to work out a lower rate with a different lender. It can’t do you any harm to shop around before making a commitment. This is good advice to follow throughout the whole process.

Most importantly, you should be aware of how different banks handle payment arrangements with their loan officers. If they’re paid on commission, you might end up shelling out more money in the form of a higher interest rate. You could also opt to use a mortgage broker, who can shop around for different rates for you. If you go this route, keep in mind that mortgage origination fees go to loan officers, not toward your home.

Pay Attention to the Inspection

Before you close on a house, you’ll have to get the property inspected by a professional. Pay close attention to the reports, and share the findings with your real estate agent. He or she may be able to negotiate with the seller to get you either a lower price or cash back at the closing to be put toward repairs.

Buy a Fixer-Upper

In general, a home that’s in need of significant repair will cost less than a comparable property that’s perfect. As long as you’re willing to take on a little bit of extra work, you can use this discrepancy to your advantage. Just be sure to take the renovations into account when you’re setting your budget and be careful not to go overboard on cosmetic repairs until the main issues have been resolved. Also, remember that you might not be able to move in until the initial renovations are complete.

Since your home will probably be your most valuable asset, it makes sense to begin by saving as many pennies as possible. This will chart a path to greater financial security and allow you to rest more easily under your new roof.

If you’re ready to buy a home, search for one here!