With existing inventories continuing to drop, buyers are discovering that they may not be able to buy the home of their dreams within their personal budgets. With the exception of affluent buyers, and some second homebuyers, most people in the market for a home are running into this problem. When your wish list is too long, it is nearly impossible to find every required feature in a single home especially on a budget. I suggest that your list be what you actually need, rather than what you want. An experienced real estate agent can help you determine if your list is realistic within your price range and budget. With a clear list of essentials, you can come much closer to getting the home you really want at a price you can afford. Buyer competition is fierce, getting a pre-qualified letter from your lender will have you stand out among your competition. In our local market you may be competing against multiple other home shoppers who want the same home you do. With a pre-qualified letter, you can demonstrate to the seller that you are only a few steps away from having the check in hand to pay for the house. Finally, have a professional Realtor as your agent who will guide you throughout the whole process. It truly can be the difference between getting your home or staying on the sidelines.