Once the finish line toward homeownership is in plain view, it’s natural to be overcome by joy and jitters.

If you’re about ready to submit an offer for your dream home purchase, here are some things to consider as you approach the finish line.

Be preapproved

The importance of getting a preapproval cannot be stressed enough.

During the preapproval process, the lender will determine whether the applicant qualifies for a loan and for how much.

A preapproval will not only help establish the buyer’s budget, but it’s a signal to the seller that the applicant is vetted and ready to strike a deal.

A preapproval is like having a world-class runner on your team.

Reduce contingencies

Any major transaction such as buying a home will come with contingencies. They’re great for protecting each party, but they can also bog down the process.

So whenever possible, the buyer should be reasonable with their expectations in today’s red-hot market.

The easier path forward you can create, the better the chances you’ll have for success.

Get feel for neighborhood

In a tight market, buyers are not always finding homes in neighborhoods they both know and desire.

Since buying a home is like buying a neighborhood, it’s vital to check out the neighborhood and learn about what makes it tick.

If the home you’re eyeballing is comparable to other homes in neighborhoods you know, why not give it a chance? Just do a little more digging first to determine if the unfamiliar neighborhood as a whole matches your needs and lifestyle.

Don’t forget closing costs

With all the excitement bubbling up during the final phases of buying a home, it’s easy to lose sight of the closing costs.

Buyers should remember that closing costs represent about 2% to 5% of the purchase price, a cost on top of the financed portion of the transaction.

Review every bottom line number, including the purchase amount, taxes and closing costs, for the full picture of the costs associated with buying a home.

Leave no stone unturned

Again, the excitement of buying a home is overwhelming, as it should be.

Nevertheless, buyers should be mindful and not just gloss over some of the details and fine print.

Home buyers can make more informed financial decisions and plan ahead by accounting for home insurance premiums, utility bills and other miscellaneous costs.