1. Save A Down Payment
You do not always need 20% down to buy a home. There are loans available that allow buyers to put down 3% and there are specialty loans with 0% with a VA or USDA loan for example. Let your lender explore the loan products that are right for you.
2. Count On Your Real Estate Agent
As a real estate agent, I can guide you through the process. My job is to make the process as smooth as possible and get you into your dream home. We work together to make your path to homeownership a success.
3. Know Your Credit Score
Every loan has different credit requirements. Although your credit score is only a numeric representation of your history and ability for repayment. Contact me so I can connect you with a qualified lender in your area. They will pull your credit so you can find out your buying power. If your credit is not perfect, don’t worry. We can help you put a plan together to clean up your finances.
4. Get Pre-Approved
When you pull your credit score, you can ask the lender to do a pre-approved letter. That letter is forwarded to me and we start looking at your options within your buying power.
5. Go Home Shopping
We will work together on selecting homes to view and we can start planning showings. We meet to discuss your must-haves in a home. I help research properties for you and make calls prior to showing homes so we make effective use of our time. Sometimes we may not find homes that fit your needs and that’s ok. Each home helps direct us to the one that is right for you.
6. Make An Offer
When we find your ideal home, we will meet and discuss the offer terms so I can prepare a purchase contract. Together we devise a plan to present the offer with the best price, which is especially important in competitive markets. If the offer is accepted, then move to the next steps.
7. Get A Home Inspection
This is one area that you do not want to skimp on. As the buyer, this is for your protection to ensure the home does not have hidden issues. Hidden issues can surface down the road or a current problem that needs to be addressed before the sale finalized. You are protecting your investment by hiring a qualified inspector to address these potential pitfalls.
8. Get A Home Appraisal
Your lender will arrange for an appraisal. This ensures that the home is worth the price you agreed to pay to own it. Remember that banks will only issue a loan for the appraised value.
9. Close The Sale
Once your loan is approved, the lender schedules a closing date. That is also the same day you will sign your loan documents which completes the purchase. You also get the keys!
10. Move-In Day
Congratulations! You’re officially a homeowner!
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Young buyers (Millennials & Gen Z) have waited longer than previous generations to enter the housing market for their first home. However, this hasn’t stopped them from dreaming about the home they will eventually buy. Many spend hours searching listings and building Pinterest boards of their favorite home features.
According to a survey from Open Listings, 70% of single renters are more likely to spend their Sunday nights swiping through house listings than dating profiles.
All that time window shopping has led 45% of millennials to expect the first home they buy to be their “dream home”! They are willing to wait longer, save more for a larger down payment, and are pickier about the listings they want to tour and the features that they want to see in their first home.
Waiting a little longer to buy a home than their parents or grandparents did has also helped young buyers become more established in their careers prior to making such a large purchase. Lawrence Yun, NAR’s Chief Economist, recently commented,
“Older millennials are now entering the prime earning stages of their careers, and the size and costs of homes they purchase reflect this. Their choices are falling more in line with their Gen X and boomer counterparts.”
In some areas of the country, high competition in the starter home market forces young buyers to wait longer. The extra money they save during that time opens their search to bigger, more expensive homes.
If this trend continues, older millennials will skip the starter home altogether, going straight to a trade-up or premium home instead.
If you are one of the many young renters planning on buying your first home soon, let’s get together to help determine what type of home will best suit your present and future needs.
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Freddie Mac recently released a report entitled, “Perceptions of Down Payment Consumer Research.” Their research revealed that,
“For many prospective homebuyers, saving for a down payment is the largest barrier to achieving the goal of homeownership. Part of the challenge for those planning to purchase a home is their perception of how much they will need to save for the down payment…
…Based on our recent survey of individuals planning to purchase a home in the next three years, nearly a third think they need to put more than 20% down.”
Myth #1: “I Need a 20% Down Payment”
Buyers often overestimate the funds needed to qualify for a home loan. According to the same report:
22% of renters and 31% of homeowners believe lenders require 20% or more of a home’s sale price as a down payment for a typical mortgage today. And,
“If a 20% down payment was required, 70% of those who were planning to buy a home in the next three years said it would delay them from purchasing and nearly 30% indicated they would never be able to afford a home.”
While many believe at least 20% down is necessary to buy the home of their dreams, they do not realize programs are available which permit as little as 3%. Many renters may actually be able to enter the housing market sooner than they ever imagined!
Myth #2: “I Need a 780 FICO® Score or Higher to Buy”
Many either don’t know or are misinformed concerning the FICO® score necessary to qualify, believing a ‘good’ credit score is 780 or higher.
To debunk this myth, let’s take a look at Ellie Mae’s latest Origination Insight Report, which focuses on recently closed (approved) loans.As indicated in the chart above, 52.4% of approved mortgages had a credit score of 600-749.
Whether buying your first home or moving up to your dream home, knowing your options will make the mortgage process easier. Your dream home may already be within your reach.
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