Buying a home can initially seem like a tough hill to climb.

With so many lenders and financial considerations, it can be tough to sort through what financing program can get you to your goal.

Bring clarity to the process and set aside any uncertainty with these five first-time homebuying tips.

Obtain pre-approval
A pre-approval commitment from a lender is one of the most valuable steps you’ll take when buying a home.

The reason? It signals to the real estate world that you’re ready to buy a home.

It’ll also tell you a great deal about your financial standing in terms of how much home you can afford and how much your monthly payments will be.

Ask a lot of questions
Call, text and email your real estate agent and loan officer every question that comes to mind.

Remember, if this is your first time buying a home, you’ll have plenty of questions. Don’t let that hold you back from finding answers. This is the only way to fully understand the process and make progress toward your financial goals.

Work on your credit
Your credit score goes a long way in the decision-making process a lender must carry out when deciding on whether to grant you a loan and under what terms.

By improving your score today, you can bank on more favorable borrowing terms.

Do your best to pay any outstanding debt, decrease your debt-to-income ratio and remove any inaccuracies to your credit report. This can be easily checked through free credit services and other free services provided by credit card companies.

Tackle student debt
Student loans stand in the way of many millennial buyers.

Regardless of your outstanding debt, it’s important to get back on track and begin chipping away at your debt to make room for your next greatest investment.

Save, save, save
You can both pay off debt and save for the future.

Buying a home is a lot of financial responsibility, so the habits you can establish today may not only lead to homeownership, but it’ll help you be a better homeowner.

While saving for a 20 percent down payment may be out of the question for many, you’ll need to set aside money for a modest down payment and to pay for the costs of purchasing a home.