Time your purchase well
Timing is a crucial element in homebuyer readiness, says Amy Butterworth, an associate broker for Gibson Sotheby's International Realty in Boston.
A time frame that's too long doesn't make sense, and neither does a timetable that's too short. For example, if your lease doesn't expire for many months or you need to move within 30 days, buying a home might not be practical for you right now, Butterworth says.
The ideal situation is to be ready to buy and be able to wait, especially if sellers are fielding multiple offers.
You can't be too hesitant, Butterworth says, and you "can't only be ready and raring to go because there will be disappointments -- that's just how the market is right now. You have to go into it with realistic expectations."