Financing Your Home Purchase
Although housing affordability is becoming increasingly difficult for many, you may be surprised to discover you have more disposable income than you at first thought. Once you've decided to buy a home, consider these tips to prepare for your purchase.
Know What You Can Afford
There is more cost calculations to home ownership than making the monthly mortgage payment such as taxes, insurance, utility bills, maintenance, and association fees if you buy a condominium. By getting pre-approved for a mortgage you will truly know how much house you can afford.
Know and Understand the Home Buying Process
Consider a home buyer counseling to educate you in the complexities of the home buying process, budgeting and your responsibilities as a homeowner.
Know Your Credit Score
Lenders are willing to take less risk than in prior years and could require good-to-great credit to get a loan and you can't assume you have good credit, you need to know your credit score. It's also very helpful to know what determines your credit score. You can learn a lot from myFico.com, a website provided by Fair Isaac, the company that invented the FICO score.
Do some comparison shopping for lenders. Interest rates and loan availability can vary widely from market to market, and from year to year. If you are a first-time buyer, government agencies like MassHousing offer below-market interest rates for qualified buyers.
Work with a REALTOR®
Working with a real estate professional, is a very good way to get the most house for your money. REALTORS® truly understand the local housing market. They handle hundreds, if not thousands, of real estate transactions over the course of their careers, and can counsel buyers through this complex home buying process.
Copyright Massachusetts Association of REALTORS®. Reprinted with Permission.