Talk to multiple lenders
Your Realtor will probably know a few lenders whom they’ve worked with in the past. You can also ask family and friends who they’ve wored with successfully. Every lender will have different recommendations and knowledge so it makes sense to weigh your options
Know your credit
You NEED to know your credit score. Different loans have different minimum credit score requirements.
Money saving hacks
For many people, the down payment is the biggest hurdle in the homebuying process. The closing costs can also be an unwelcome surprise if you weren’t expecting it. Make sure you know how much you have to save and manager your day to day accordingly. Your lender should be able to give you a pretty good ballpark based on certain home prices. Experts recommend adding 5% to be on the safe side.
If you have trouble keeping up the balance in your savings account, try these tips
- Automatic transfers from your checking to savings
- Save raises and bonuses rather than spending them
- Set aside your tax refunds
- Keep the change – some banks allow debit card users to sign up fro a service that rounds up purchases to the nearest dollar and puts the change into a linked saving account
- Visualize your goal – yes, I’m talking about a mood board.
Lock your rate
Rates are unpredictable. Locking in a rate when you get close to buying can protect you if they go up. Many lenders will also offer a one-time adjustment in case rates go down.
Be confident in your job security
If you’re unhappy at your job, don’t buy a house. Part of qualification for a mortgage will be based on your job history. Making a big change just before you buy could be problematic. Lenders advise buyers to stay the course until after the home closes escrow.
Don’t add debt
Don't take out new credit cards or buy a car. Your lender will tell you what to do to protect your credit but if you haven’t talked to anyone and think you’re getting close to being ready to buy, don’t add any debt.
Find a good agent
Probably the most important thing you need to do is find a seasoned, knowledgeable agent to ensure the process runs smoothly. An experienced agent will have important relationships in place that can help you in every part of the process. For example, they may know of homes that aren’t even listed yet.
Are you ready to buy your first home? Connect with an agent today.