The December holiday season can be a hectic time for most people — especially when searching for a new home. To help you navigate this busy period, check out these tips:

1. Be Prepared. Before you begin your home search, get pre-approved for any financing you need. This will give you a clear budget and show sellers you’re a serious buyer. In addition, create a list of must-have features to streamline your search and help you quickly identify suitable properties.

2. Target Your Desired Neighborhoods. Focus on specific neighborhoods that meet your criteria for location, schools, and amenities. By narrowing down your search, you’ll save time and energy — and increase your chances of finding the right home.

3. Get Alerted to New Listings. Arrange to receive notifications of new listings as soon as they come up. This will ensure you’re among the first to know when a potential home becomes available, giving you a competitive edge.

4. Schedule Viewing Appointments Early. During the holiday season, schedules can fill up quickly, both for you and for the sellers. So, schedule viewing appointments as soon as you find a potential property.

By following these tips, you’ll be well on your way to finding your next dream home before year’s end.