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If you’ve never purchased a home before, the process can seem overwhelming. What, exactly, do you need to do before you buy a home? What steps do you need to take? And where do you start?

recent article from realtor.com outlined some of the most important initial steps first-time homeowners need to take as they navigate the home buying process, including:

  • Saving for a down payment. Most lenders require you to cover a percentage of the home’s cost in cash—known as a down payment. While a 20 percent down payment can be beneficial, it’s not typically necessary. Many lenders are willing to work with buyers with a lower down payment—so just save up as much as you can prior to starting your home search.
  • Getting pre-approved for a mortgage. Before you start looking for a home, you need to know how much home you can afford—and that means getting pre-approved for your mortgage. Once you’re pre-approved, you know exactly how much you have to spend—which will save you time, energy, and frustration during your home search. (No one wants to fall in love with a home, only to find out they aren’t approved for a large enough mortgage to purchase it.)
  • Finding the right real estate agent. A great real estate agent will walk you through the entire home buying process, whether that’s finding you the right home, negotiating a great deal, or answering questions along the way. So, before you get too far into your home search, make sure to find a trusted, reputable agent to partner with. At Destination Real Estate, we offer a complimentary Home Buyers Guide packed full of helpful information.

The Takeaway:

Bottom line? If you’ve never purchased a home before, it can be hard to know where to begin—but these steps are a great place to start! Get your FREE Home Buyers Guide HERE.

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In case you missed it, here is the September newsletter! October coming soon!

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Last day with my 2 special house guests. Went on a walk in the meadow behind our house and they just love the water! I will miss your cuddles🐾 See you soon ❤️ ...

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It's October, which means all the cobwebs and dust In your house just become Halloween decorations*

*unless It's listed for sale... In that case, get to cleanin'!

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#sonjasellsmammoth #mammothcondos #mammothrealestate
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Congratulations to my client on the sale of this upgraded Forest Meadow condo. Hal has owned the place for 40+ years so this was a big deal for him. Time to move on to his next chapter and he is thrilled a full time local will be the new owner! Thanks to Brandee & Nicole @nexthomemammoth and the team at Sierra Escrow for a smooth transaction.

#mammothlakes #californialife #sierra #easternsierra #mammothlife #vacationliving #mammothlifestyle #dailylife
#sonjasellsmammoth #mammothcondos #mammothrealestate
#destinationmammoth #destinationrealestate #mammothmountain #monocounty #mammothhomes #monocountytourism #monocountyrealestate @side_realestate
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Enjoy beer, a Bavarian Buffet from the EATery, and a silent auction benefiting the Rotary College Scholarship for local students.

October 13th!

More info at MLT's Website!

#mammothlakes #californialife #sierra #easternsierra #mammothlife #vacationliving #mammothlifestyle #dailylife
#sonjasellsmammoth #mammothcondos #mammothrealestate
#destinationmammoth #destinationrealestate #mammothmountain #monocounty #mammothhomes #monocountytourism #monocountyrealestate
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Open House Today! Come see this incredible property for yourself!

44 Wagon Wheel Drive
Sunday, October 2
4 PM - 6:30 PM

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#mammothlakes #californialife #sierra #easternsierra #mammothlife #vacationliving #mammothlifestyle #dailylife
#sonjasellsmammoth #mammothcondos #mammothrealestate
#destinationmammoth #destinationrealestate #mammothmountain #monocounty #mammothhomes #monocountytourism #monocountyrealestate
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Fall is here! Happy colors in the mountains!

I don't think most people realize how beautiful it is -- nice weather, fewer people and fall colors. So much to love!

Go to Mono County Tourism to sign up to find the best places to see the beautiful fall colors!

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Late Friday afternoon walk with our 2 houseguests. #lovewherewelive #mammothlakes #visitmammoth ...

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Sonja recently helped me purchase a condo. My experience with her was only positive. She's knowledgeable, thorough and friendly. She is the consummate professional and the standard to which I would hold any real estate agent. - Alexander R.

#mammothlakes #californialife #sierra #easternsierra #mammothlife #vacationliving #mammothlifestyle #dailylife
#sonjasellsmammoth #mammothcondos #mammothrealestate
#destinationmammoth #destinationrealestate #mammothmountain #monocounty #testimonials @side_realestae
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Time isn’t always on your side, especially if you’re trying to time the real estate market.

Some homeowners postponed selling while they waited for prices to hit their peak. Here’s why you shouldn’t wait any longer:

💲The market is unpredictable — even experts can’t guarantee what it will do next!
☑️ You could pay more to buy your next home the longer you delay.
🤝 It’s still a great time to sell, but rising mortgage rates are beginning to slow down demand.

You can’t control the real estate market — but you can control when you put your home up for sale 🏡

Contact us to start a conversation about the right time to make your move.

#realestatetips #realestate #houseforsale #greatvalue #newlisting #mammothrealestate #mammothcondos #mammothcabins #sonjasellsmammoth #mammothmarkettrends #timingthemarket #destinationmammoth
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BIG bright windows are the main attraction in this spacious 2 bed/2 bath condo in St. Anton. This complex is next door to Canyon Lodge – one of the shortest walks of any Mammoth location! Come see this condo today and get ready for the best winter season of your life!

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#mammothlakes #californialife #sierra #easternsierra #mammothlife #vacationliving #mammothlifestyle #dailylife
#sonjasellsmammoth #mammothcondos #mammothrealestate
#destinationmammoth #destinationrealestate #mammothmountain #monocounty #mammothhomes #monocountytourism #monocountyrealestate
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If you're renting but plan on buying a house in the near, don't renew your lease without going month-to-month or making sure you can cancel it by giving your landlord a month or two notice.

#mammothlakes #californialife #sierra #easternsierra #mammothlife #vacationliving #mammothlifestyle #dailylife
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Thursday, September 29
9 AM - 11 AM

Stop by and tour 3 amazing Mammoth Lakes Properties tomorrow!!!

#mammothlakes #californialife #sierra #easternsierra #mammothlife #vacationliving #mammothlifestyle #dailylife
#sonjasellsmammoth #mammothcondos #mammothrealestate
#destinationmammoth #destinationrealestate #mammothmountain #monocounty #mammothhomes #monocountytourism #monocountyrealestate
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Beautiful sunset tonight.

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#sonjasellsmammoth #mammothcondos #mammothrealestate
#destinationmammoth #destinationrealestate #mammothmountain #monocounty #mammothhomes #monocountytourism #monocountyrealestate
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Sonja was very knowledgeable and competent in selling our house in Mammoth. She is very personable and answered all of our numerous questions with courtesy, humor, and patience. Despite a greatly slowed real estate market, she sold our house in a reasonable time frame. - Stuart F.

#mammothlakes #californialife #sierra #easternsierra #mammothlife #vacationliving #mammothlifestyle #dailylife
#sonjasellsmammoth #mammothcondos #mammothrealestate
#destinationmammoth #destinationrealestate #mammothmountain #monocounty #testimonials
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#nofilter Sunday evening neighborhood stroll. ❤️reflections, water, blue skies and fluffy clouds ☁️ #lovewherewelive ...

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If you have a light fixture you want to keep and take with you to your next home, take it down and replace it before you put your house on the market. You can also leave it up and "exclude" it from the sale within your listing, but it can cause issues if a buyer sees it and wants it. Avoid problems by removing it ahead of time.

#mammothlakes #californialife #sierra #easternsierra #mammothlife #vacationliving #mammothlifestyle #dailylife
#sonjasellsmammoth #mammothcondos #mammothrealestate
#destinationmammoth #destinationrealestate #mammothmountain #monocounty #mammothhomes #monocountytourism #monocountyrealestate #realestatetips #realestatetipsandtricks
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