One of the most exciting steps to take as an adult is to purchase your first home. Home ownership is considered to be a wise investment that can pay off in future years. When you want to prepare to buy your first home, you'll need to follow a few tips.
Save for the Down Payment
You'll need a down payment to purchase a home to secure the purchase. The amount of money that you save will influence how much you pay on your mortgage each month, making it necessary to set aside as much as possible. The type of loan that you choose will also influence the minimum amount of money that you'll need for the down payment. Most people save five to 20 percent of the selling price of the home.
Secure Your Employment
You'll need to have a record of steady employment before you apply for a home loan. Lenders will want to trust that you'll be capable of making the payments each month and that you won't get behind with the amount of money that you owe. You'll need to have at least one year of work from the same employer to be taken seriously with your loan application. Avoid changing jobs after submitting the application and don't become self-employed, which can cause you to be turned down for a home loan.
It's also necessary to calculate your debt-income ratio, which will affect how much you can afford. Pay off as much debt as possible before you submit the loan to ensure that you can borrow more money.
Determine Your Budget
Knowing your budget is essential to finding the right home to purchase before you begin to shop around. You'll need to add up all of your income for your household, which can include side jobs that you work. Multiply the amount by two or three or calculate 30 percent of your gross income to get an idea of what you can afford. You'll also need to take other costs of home ownership into consideration, which includes property taxes, repairs, and association fees. The interest rate that you lock in will also affect the overall price of the house, along with the term that you select. You may want to wait to purchase the home during certain times of the year when interest rates may drop.
It's also important to set aside extra money for the cost of new furniture, window treatments, and appliances that you'll need to purchase after moving into the property.
Increase Your Credit Score
Lenders will take a close look at your credit score to determine if you have a good history with repaying your debt and managing your money. Your credit score will increase if you make your payments on time on your loans or credit cards. Paying off the balances and utilizing 20 percent of the available balance will also boost the score. You can lock in a lower interest rate if you increase your credit score, which can save hundreds to thousands of dollars each year on your mortgage payment.
You'll also want to remove errors that are present on your credit history. Credit bureaus are prone to making mistakes or confusing your name with another individual that has a credit history.
When you're ready to purchase your first home, you can have a smooth and successful process with the right steps taken. By planning and preparing ahead of time, you can have peace of mind knowing that you'll find the perfect starter home to call your own.
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The information provided is for the clients' personal, non-commercial use and may not be used for any purpose other than to identify prospective properties clients may be interested in purchasing. All properties are subject to prior sale or withdrawal. All information provided is deemed reliable but is not guaranteed accurate, and should be independently verified. Greater Baton Rouge Assoc. of REALTORS® Last Updated: 5/22/2018 12:29:00 PM