FOR BUYERS: Helpful Tips for 2015
Becoming a first time homebuyer has many benefits. Not only is there the pride you will feel in becoming a first time homebuyer, but there’s also the financial security you will earn through the equity you build in your new home.
But before you go calling a Realtor or charging into a local bank or visiting with a mortgage broker for assistance with financing, consider these tips every first time homebuyer needs to know when buying:
Get current on your credit
The first, and possibly easiest, thing to do when becoming a first time homebuyer is to take a look at your credit history. If things look good, and your credit score is above 620, then you should be good to go. If your credit is questionable, now is the time to start repairing any unfavorable items on your credit report. Luckily, there are a lot of things you can do to repair your credit before buying a house.
Manage your debt
Most first time homebuyers have some sort of debt from student loans or credit cards. Having debt doesn’t mean you won’t quality for a home mortgage loan. If you can, you should try to pay down the debt you owe as much as possible before applying for a mortgage loan. Also, remember that taking on debt in the middle of a mortgage process can throw a wrench into things, so hold off on your spending if you can.
While it may be very early on in the home buying process, it’s actually never too soon to start saving for that inevitable down payment. Lenders look at down payments as investments in the new home you’re about to buy—and often that investment involves thousands of dollars, depending on the home you want to buy. Experts suggest a first time homebuyer will need a down payment that equals between 10% and 20% of the price of the house, meaning if the house you want to buy is worth $300,000, you will need between $30,000 and $60,000 to put down. Start saving now!
Find a Realtor that suits you and your needs
Because the home buying process can be a tad bit overwhelming, it’s a good idea to surround oneself with hard working, reputable and easy-to-work-with professionals. You’ll likely be looking at many houses with the Realtor you select, so be sure you can maintain a good working relationship. Also, it’s never a bad idea to have a Realtor and mortgage broker who can work together.
It’s no secret that buying a home can be challenging. Hopefully these tips will help you ease into the prospect of becoming a first time homebuyer and empower you to make good decision moving forward this year.