A key part of the American Dream is becoming a homeowner. Deciding to buy a home is one of the biggest decisions you'll make in your life, so we've put together a list of five important things to consider before you begin your home buying process.

From financial planning to determining what home features are necessities and what are just desires, check out this list of 5 things to consider before you buy your first home.

1. Are you ready to buy a home?

Since purchasing a home is a large financial commitment, it's best that you make sure you're in a position to do so. Consider the present and the future. Do you have a steady job that you plan on keeping? Do you have a family or plan to start one in the near future? Are you ready for new financial and home maintenance responsibilities? These are just some of the questions you need to ask yourself first as you decide if homeownership is right for you.

Couple Outside Of Home

2. Where do you want to live?

Again, think about your future. It's important to have an idea of where you want your new home to be so you can start searching for the perfect home location.

3. What does my family want and need?

Make a list of what you NEED in a home and what you WANT in a home - there's a huge difference. Your needs should come first during your home buying process. Once you have found what you need in a new home, such as more storage or split bedrooms, you can focus on what you want. You may not be able to have it all right now, but your wants can be added on or upgraded later down the road.

Family Outside New Manufactured Home

4. How much home can you afford?

As you're preparing to purchase your dream home, look over your budget. Come up with some reasonable numbers of how much you can afford to pay each month for your home. Make sure to include your other monthly expenses like home insurance, taxes, living expenses and to still have some left over for your savings. You may have to budget accordingly depending on the home you plan to purchase.

Manufactured Home Welcome Mat

5. How much do I need to save for a deposit?

Once you decide on a new home, you'll want to pay for your home deposit. It's a good idea to set some money aside each month to plan for a deposit and any closing costs. Also, make sure to check with your lender about the different financing options available and what they require to begin your home purchase.

Now that you have an idea of some of the most important things to know before buying a home, you can decide if you're ready to embrace all the freedoms, privileges and responsibilities that come along with homeownership. Once you are, you can begin looking for the home of your dreams!