Fun & Smart Considerations for Home Buyers

Pam Robinson
Welcome to the exciting world of home buying! Whether you're a first-time buyer or a seasoned pro, embarking on the journey to find your dream home can be an exhilarating experience. From envisioning the perfect backyard for BBQ parties to imagining the cozy evenings by the fireplace, there are so many things to consider when buying a home. But fear not! In this blog, we're going to explore some fun and fabulous tips for home buyers that will make the process a breeze. So, put on your house-hunting hat and let's dive into the adventure of finding your perfect abode!

1.    Affordability: What monthly payment are you comfortable with.  The lender may qualify you for $200k.  Based on your lifestyle, is that an amount you are comfortable with and that will still allow you to save?   

2.   Money: Do you have any savings?  If not, start now.  A down payment is is typically 3-5% of the sale. Additionally, you need that amount for closing costs in this market.  Other options for funds: 1) Perhaps you have family member that is willing to give you a gift 2) Down payment assistance programs 3) Retirement plan  

3.   Credit: Are you credit ready. When is the last time you reviewed your credit report. It’s time if you of thinking of making this purchase.  Visit www.annual credit report for a free copy.  Review it thoroughly.  Make sure you don’t have any late payments in the past 12 months.  This will prohibit your from purchasing.  

4.   Look at your score.  You need a credit rating of 640 or higher for most loans.  The higher your score, the better your interest rate will be. If you are not there, visit the bank where you have your account and ask to speak to someone in the mortgage department.  They will gladly look at your credit report and let you know what changes need to happen for you to be ready.    Judgements will take longer to remove.  We recommend you talk to a credit specialist.  They may be able to help you reduce them.   Some credit unions don’t provide an Equifax Score. Most lenders are going to have the three agencies that report to the Credit Bureau.  

5.   Length of Stay: Will this be your forever house. If this is not the plan, you want to make sure you are purchasing in an area that is appreciating in value.  If it is not, you could lose money if you sell in the next 3-7 years.  

6.   School District: Do you need to be in a specific school zone. I loved the first home I purchased. The schools were great until it was time for high school.  I had no plans of moving but wanted my daughter to have a great school and more options for scholarships.  The schools in my district didn’t offer that so I had to move. 

7.   Location: How far are you willing to drive to work?  Is there substantial traffic that you would like to avoid?    

8.   Must Haves: Make a list of your must haves.  Does this fit within your budget.? There’s nothing more frustrating than visiting homes and finding out they don’t have that feature you really want.  Think about that now.  How many bedrooms do I need? Do I need a space for a home office?  Talk to your significant other and make sure you are in agreement on what you want.  This will save lots of time and heartbreak. Click here for our free dream home checklist.  

9.   Guidance: Find a realtor to help walk you through the process.  A realtor can help direct you in the right path for all of the above.  They are trained in every area and have made connections with vendors who can help you in every aspect of the process.  A good realtor will make this process fun, easy and memorable. They will work on your behalf to make sure you get the best bang for your buck.