5 Simple Tips for First-Time Homebuyers
If you’re looking to purchase your first home, these 5 simple tips will help to make your dream come true.
1. Get A Full Credit Report
Credit scores are very important when it comes time to get approved for your mortgage. Getting your full credit report ahead of time will show you what your credit score is, but more importantly, it will show a full list of your credit accounts, lenders, payment history and types of accounts you have open. Check for any possible errors and try to get them corrected as soon as possible.
2. Create A Savings Plan
Saving for the downpayment is simply the hardest and most time consuming aspect of becoming a First-Time Homebuyer. As home prices continue to increase, so do the downpayments necessary to purchase. Creating a savings plan with a financial advisor can be very beneficial. A structured savings plan will help keep you committed to your savings goals. Also, certain financial products can help your savings keep up or even outperform home prices.
3. Speak To A Mortgage Specialist/ Mortgage Broker
GET PRE-APPROVED! Before you start looking at houses it is so important that you determine what your budget is. A Mortgage Advisor will be able to get you a mortgage pre-approval and can often lock in an interest rate for a specified time period (Usually 90-120 days). They will also give you more options and information on all of the mortgage products they offer.
4. Create A List of Wants & Needs For Your Future Home
This is best to do after you get a mortgage pre-approval so that you have a budget in mind. I find it is best to create a full list of all the wants and needs you have for your first home. Distinguish between what are wants and what are needs. After writing out as many as you can, choose your TOP 5 MOST IMPORANT. For example, when buying our first home we had decided on these 5 things: Minimum 2 Bedrooms, Nice Yard, Detached, Forced Air/Gas Heat, and in our Desired Location. Everyone will have different needs & wants but no house will be 100% perfect. If you can find a home that meets your top 5, then you’re on the right track.
5. Speak to A Realtor
Now that you’ve sorted out your credit history, saved for your downpayment, got pre-approved and have a rough idea of what type of house you are looking for, it’s time to retain the services of a licensed Realtor. Keep in mind, speaking to a Realtor is also a great first step to the process as we are able to help you create a plan that’s right for you and we can refer trusted financial and mortgage advisors. Before going out and looking at homes, it can be beneficial to have a meeting with your Realtor to make sure they are a good fit for you. You can also use this opportunity to learn more about the full process of purchasing a home such as how to write an offer, what conditions there are to protect you, costs of lawyers, land transfer tax, home inspectors, and other important aspects and tips on purchasing your first home.