Know what you can afford
Homes in the Denver area that are starter homes tend to sell quickly due to the lower price point. Very important for a first time home buyers to be ready to make an offer. Get pre-approved with 2-3 lenders and provide your agent with the approval letter. We can use the letter in the offer to show your commitment to purchase to try to have your offer accepted over others.
Save $ for down payment & closing costs
No matter what you think you will need in your savings before buying your 1st home, plan to save some extra money. This will help you have enough to put the payment down on the home and also have money for your closing costs. Don't forget you will probably want some money for moving and small improvements to the home. Some lenders require only 3% down. Explore different mortgage options.
1st home -not your forever home
Be realistic in your home search criteria. This is your first home. You will probably not find everything you are looking for it in. When viewing homes, you will need to think about small repairs, painting, wall paper-removal, etc. Most important aspects to check off your list is there enough room for your needs for the next 3-5 years? Is this the right neighborhood? Homes condition is important too. Still good to look at crime statistics, and schools (even if you don't have children).
New Construction or old - hire the right Agent
If you buy a new construction home, make sure you hire a Real Estate Agent. They will say it's not necessary but it does not cost you any extra money to hire your own agent on the buy side. Don't visit new home communities without your agent. If you sign in without an agent they will not pay the commission to your agent. I have purchased several new homes and have always been thankful for hiring our own agent who negotiated the deal and also helped us through the entire process.