Are you ready to buy a home?
Have you had a steady source of income for 2-3 years and is it a reliable source?
Do you have any outstanding debts such as credit card or car payments?
Do you have money for a down payment?
A good record of paying your bills?
The means to pay a monthly mortgage?
Determine your needs
Make a note of why you are looking for a new home. Is your family growing, would you like to build equity, are you moving to a new town? Create a mental picture of what you would like your future house to look like. Make a list of must have items and another list of items you would like to have. It's extremely important to know exactly what you need in your new home. Give yourself a time frame for buying a home. This will keep you on track and give you a guideline to follow. Your agent will be able to assist you once they know exactly what you want and will help to fulfill you needs.
Know your rights:
- Fair Housing: Equal Opportunity for All.
- Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA)
- Borrower's Rights
- Predatory Lending
Shop for a Loan and Become pre-approved
Save money by doing your homework. Talk to several lenders, compare costs and interest rates, negotiate to get a better deal. Consider getting pre-approved for a loan.
Once you choose a lender, they will perform an extensive check on your current financial status. They will determine the loan amount you will be eligible for. Doing this will help the seller know you are capable of buying a home and that no problems will arise.
Make an Offer
Discuss the process with your real estate agent. If the seller counters your offer, you may need to negotiate until you both agree to the terms of the sale.
Get a Home Inspection
Make your offer contingent on a home inspection. An inspection will tell you about the condition of the home, and can help you avoid buying a home that needs major repairs.