Do yourself a favor - go online and look at as many houses as you think fit your own criteria (trulia and zillow are good resources). I have friends who did nothing on their own and spent weekend after weekend looking at dozens of houses thinking that the agent was doing something wrong, but you, as the buyer, should have an idea of what you're looking for and can easily aid in the process of locating the right house for you. I sit at a desk all day so I would look during lunch and actually was the one to tell my agent the houses we wanted to see. We looked at three houses and bought the first one we saw.
Need a garage? Don't bother looking at houses without one. Need a 3BR? Don't waste your time on 2BRs. Hate this particular neighborhood? Skip it! Simple things like that will speed things up a bit.
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