10 Tips for Buying Your First Home

  1. Get Pre-Approved: This will help determine how much you qualify to borrow and what you’re comfortable paying.

  2. Check your credit: Even if you have blemishes on your credit, you may still be able to qualify for a loan. Your loan officer can educate you on the many factors involved.

  3. Determine your down payment: Requirements vary depending on the type of loan, loan amount, and available down payment assistance programs.

  4. Save for closing costs: They may include, but are not limited to, title policy insurance, mortgage insurance, fire/flood/homeowners insurance, recording fees, and loan origination fees.

  5. Explore ways to lower your rate: You may be able to pay points (fees charged by a lender; one point is equal to 1% of the loan amount) at the beginning of the loan to lower the interest rate charged.

  6. Decide between fixed or adjustable: Depending on your short- and long-term goals, you may wish to take advantage of a fixed rate loan or one that adjusts periodically over time.

  7. Consider conventional and government loans: While conventional loans may feature fixed or adjustable interest rates, FHA, VA, and USDA loans typically involve a fixed rate.

  8. Take advantage of first-time homebuyer programs: Ask your mortgage expert about options that are customized for those who have not previously owned a home.

  9. Factor in mortgage insurance: Home loans with a down payment of less than 20% will most likely require mortgage insurance.

  10. Attend first-time homebuyer counseling: Learn about selecting a home, realtor services, homeownership responsibilities, saving for a down payment and other essential elements.

This post was brought to you by:

Joe Huston, VP of Mortgage Lending