You may be feeling like now is the time to invest in buying a home. Beyond having your downpayment, there are many ducks that need to be in a row before you take the plunge.
As a new homebuyer, you may be unaware of some of the steps you need to take to prepare to buy your home. Here are some basics that should be covered off:
1. Thoroughly review your current financial status. Identify your current monthly net income, your current monthly expenses and any resources you may have in savings. Once you understand where you are financially you will be in a position to explore your options for purchasing your new home.
2. Know your credit score! This is very important. As a former mortgage agent I have seen many people who are eager to buy, go to be approved for a mortgage only to be stopped in their tracks due to a poor credit score that they were unaware of. If you have a good credit score, keep up the great work! If not, seek the advice of a mortgage professional on how to improve your credit situation. There are things you can do to get back on track faster than you may think!
3. Determine how much you can afford for a monthly house payment. If you currently rent, your monthly rental is a good place to begin. Keep in mind that you will also have to factor in annual property taxes, home owners insurance and other expenses that are commonplace for homeowners.
4. Look at your financing options and get preapproved for a mortgage. This is especially important if it looks like interest rates might be on the rise. If you are preapproved, you could have your rate held for up to 120 days. You may have always dealt with a particular bank but it's advisable to shop around. Consult a mortgage broker like Centum Advantage Financial Group; they can help you shop around for the best rate and terms for you. A mortgage broker has access to many different financial institutions so you are not limited to the products that one bank has to offer.
5. Have a good idea of what you are looking for. Numbers of bedrooms, bathrooms, floors, new construction, pre-owned, general location, proximity to schools, work, amenities, etc. Once you establish some of these criteria you will define your search and save yourself time that you may have spent searching for properties that were unrealistic for you.
6. Obtain the services of a Century 21 Colonial REALTOR. Now that you have your finances in order and have a pretty good idea of what you are looking for, ask your REALTOR to help you find that property. They are professionals and have industry knowledge that will help find what you are looking for and sidestep many pitfalls.
7. Check out numerous homes before making a decision. Listen to the advise that your REALTOR gives you. Don't feel pressured to buy, especially when you are uncertain. Make sure that you feel confident in your choice and that it fits the criteria or most of the criteria that you had established when you started looking. Things can get confusing after you look at numerous homes so it's smart to document homes that you have seen so you can recall each of their pros and cons.
Your home is out there! Good luck!
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