How Can I Prepare to Buy a Home?
This is it. This is the year that you'll buy a home. Purchasing a home is an exciting, and potentially stressful, time in your life. Taking your time and taking a few steps to prepare before you launch into the process can help things go as smoothly as possible.
Get Ready Financially
A home is a big financial commitment. You not only have to think about the sticker price of the house, but also about the cost of homeowner's insurance, property taxes, and general maintenance. There are several things to do to prepare yourself financially for buying a home. The first is making sure your credit is in great shape. The higher your credit score, the more likely you are to get a great deal on a mortgage. It's usually a good idea to check your credit at least a year before you apply for a mortgage. Doing so will give you time to improve your score, if needed.
It's also a good idea to save as much as money as you can and to make sure you are financially stable before buying a house. You'll want to set money aside for the down payment on the home, as well as money for any surprises that might crop up, such as a plumbing issue right after you buy the house. Don't forget to save up for home improvements and for the cost of moving, too. It's also a good idea to put aside a few months worth of mortgage payments, just in case.
Make a List of What You Want
Before you start looking at what's on the market, it helps to know what you want in a home. Think of the number of bedrooms, bathrooms, and other requirements you have for a house. Make a list of must-have features, such as a front porch, adequate storage space, and a good sized kitchen, as well as features you're more flexible about, such as a finished basement and a bonus room. Also, think about where you want to live, and whether you want a detached home or are fine with a townhouse or condo.
Set a Budget
Take a look at your monthly expenses and income and figure out how much you can afford to spend on your home. Putting together a budget and having a firm upper limit in mind will help you avoid buying more home that you can comfortably pay for and can help you resist the urge to look at places beyond your budget. Usually, it's recommended that your housing costs not be more than 28% of your monthly income.
Talk to Professionals
Your credit looks good, you have a budget, and you know what you want. The next step is to start speaking with the people who can make your homeownership dream a reality. One of those people is a lender, who can pre-approve you for a mortgage. Another person if a real estate broker, such as Jason Cowdin at the Cowdin Group. When you're ready to buy, contact the Cowdin Group to discuss what you're looking for in a home and the options currently on the market.
Blog Archive2016-02-26 10:35:24
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