There are few financial decisions bigger than when purchasing a house, and being informed about the process is vital. Taking the time to educate yourself before committing to buying any type of property is well worth the time. Below are a few tips to get you started and help put you in a better position for a smooth transaction.
- Know your credit score. This is one of the most significant factors in the loan terms you will be offered. Find out what your score is before applying for a loan and spend the time repairing it if it is under 700. A high score allows you to receive a low-interest rate, that can save you thousands of dollars over the life of your loan.
- Get pre-approved before shopping. This is an integral part of the home buying process. Pre-approval means there will be nothing stopping you from getting the loan as long as your financial situation and your credit score remains the same as it was. A pre-approval letter helps when competing with another buyer for the same home.
Most sellers will ask their agent how qualified the buyer is to purchase their home. They want to feel comfortable knowing the buyer is going to be able to get the financing they need. Make sure you understand the difference between a pre-qualification and a pre-approval. A lender verifies income, employment, and credit for a pre-approval.
- Shop for the best deal. It is beneficial to shop for a lender who will give the best deal possible. You may be paying the mortgage for many years, so getting the lowest mortgage rate should be a top consideration. Compare the annual percentage rate you will be paying. And consider that some loans may require higher closing costs or you may have to pay more points. Look at the whole package to decipher the best deal.
- Be aware of every fee. There are many costs that go along with purchasing a home, above and beyond the mortgage. You should have enough income to handle insurance, association fees, repairs, and property taxes. Also, have enough savings to cover any emergencies that may arise.
- Know your needs and wants in a home. Do you want a condo or a house? It doesn’t hurt to look at both, so you can make a knowledgeable decision. List the pros and cons of one versus the other, so you are content when you finally decide what you want to purchase.
Remember, after the excitement fades, you will have to live where you are for several years. Make sure the home will meet your lifestyle and needs. Additional space is not always better. Also, be sure to look at the neighborhood as well as the house and find an area that’s right for you.
- Find a skilled realtor that knows the area. Every neighborhood in your city has unique qualities that you should be aware of before you purchase a home. Find an agent that is well-informed about the area, knows how much homes are worth, and make sure you are not overpaying for a home.
You’ll want to choose a full-time realtor who is working every day in the business and has a history of successful sales. The better they know your area, the better they will understand the differences in the market value from one property to another.
- Verify the listing information is correct. Sometimes there are things in the listing that have not been verified. A common issue in a real estate transaction is understanding what remains with the home and what doesn’t. Buyers, sellers, and sometimes a real estate agent isn’t aware of what is considered a fixture and what is considered personal property.
Contact Real Estate Agent Wendy Gimpel
Wendy Gimpel is an experienced and knowledgeable agent who will help you navigate through today’s demanding market. With more than 20 years of experience, Wendy has helped hundreds of clients, both buyers and sellers, and has a thriving business built on client recommendations and word-of-mouth. Contact her today to find your perfect home.