Let’s face it, home-buying can be an equally frightening and exciting endeavor. Luckily, I am here to provide assistance – both digitally and in person. Whether we’re walking through the home-buying process together, or you’re going solo, I have your back! Here are the 6 home-buying tips I believe are most important:
Find out what your total monthly housing cost would be
Include taxes and home insurance in your cost. In some areas, what you’ll pay for your taxes and insurance escrow can almost double your mortgage payment. Compare mortgage rates now to find the right loan for you. To get an idea of what insurance will cost you, pick a property in the area where you want to live and make a call to an insurance agent for an estimate. You won’t be obligated to buy the policy, but you’ll have a good idea of what you’ll pay if you decide to buy. To estimate what you’ll pay in taxes, check your property appraiser’s website. Just remember that exemptions and the intricacies of local tax law can create differences between what a homeowner is currently paying and what you can expect to pay as a new homeowner.
Find out how much you’ll likely pay in closing costs
The upfront cost of settling on your home shouldn’t be overlooked. Closing costs include origination fees charged by the lender, title and settlement fees, taxes and prepaid items like homeowners insurance or homeowners association fees.
Look at your budget and determine how a house fits into it
Fannie Mae recommends that buyers spend no more than 28 percent of their income on housing. Push past 30 percent and you risk becoming house-poor.
Look at the big picture
While buying a house is a great way to build wealth, maintaining your investment can be labor-intensive and expensive. When unexpected costs for new appliances, roof repairs and plumbing problems crop up, there’s no landlord to turn to, and these costs can quickly drain your bank account. 7. Prepare for the hunt If the numbers make sense for you, making these additional moves at the very beginning of the purchase process can save you time, money and aggravation.
Examine your credit
Blemished credit or the inability to make a substantial down payment can put the kibosh on your homeownership plans. That’s why it pays to look at your creditworthiness early in the homebuying process. Get your free annual credit report and examine it for errors and unresolved issues. If you find mistakes, contact the credit reporting bureau to make sure they are corrected. It’s also a good idea to get your FICO credit score, which will cost you a small fee. . 9.
Get your docs in a row
Collect pay stubs, bank account statements, W-2s, tax returns for the past two years, statements from current loans and credit lines, and names and addresses of your landlords for the past two years. Have all of that paperwork ready for the lender. It may seem like a lot, but in this age of tight credit, don’t be surprised if your lender wants a lot of documentation.
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