Buying a House? Handy Tips for Mortgages and Home Buying.

You want to buy a house. Great! But there's a lot to buying a new home. It's a big change that affects your life in several ways. That said, you want to make buying your new home the best experience possible now and in the long run.

To help you out we compiled a list of home buying and mortgage tips. Hopefully, this handy list will be helpful to you as you move forward with your new home purchase.

How much house can you afford?

A fundamental principle of money management is keeping living expenses lower than your income. Since our homes are so important to our lives, understanding how much house you can afford is a must. Check out our loan and savings calculators. They are a quick and easy tool to help you find out how much house you can afford.

Budget

Once you know how much house you can afford, it's time to set a budget. Some people cringe when they hear the word budget. However, having a plan for your money when it comes to buying a home can be the difference between peace of mind and major stress. Consider all the costs involved with purchasing a home. We'll get into these costs more in this list.

Credit Score

As a general guideline, whenever a person is looking to borrow money credit scores matter. The lender wants to know if a potential borrower will be credit worthy and identify any possible risks. Most times a higher credit score means you will have a better chance of having a lower interest rate for your mortgage. There are other things that affect your interest rate, as well. However, your credit score is an important factor. Do your best to have a high credit score and maintain that credit score throughout the home buying process. You do not want your credit score to go down and lose an attractive interest rate that would benefit you over the term of your mortgage.

You can get a free credit report. Just click here. Review your credit reports and address any errors or potential issues on the report.

Which mortgage is right for you?

Some may not know but there are a variety of mortgages out there. It's a good idea to look at them and get familiar with them. Knowing the features and benefits of the various mortgages will allow you to make a better decision about which mortgage is the right one for you. Should you take a 15 year or 30 year mortgage? Maybe a 15 year mortgage would be better for your particular situation instead of a 30 year mortgage. Take time to understand the types of mortgages. It can make a big difference.

Understand the Costs Involved with Buying a Home

Buying a home isn't like going to the store and buying a new TV. In fact, home purchases are quite unique. There are costs involved with buying a home that you will need to keep in mind when planning and setting a budget. Here's a list of some of the costs you should consider.

  • Principal, Interest, taxes, and insurance
  • Utilities
  • Appraisals
  • Inspections
  • Closing Costs
  • Moving expenses

Ask About No Closing Costs

Sometimes credit unions and other mortgage lenders will offer no closing costs. Having no closing costs can save you a whole lot of money. Ask a mortgage expert or credit union staff about any no closing cost mortgage offers or other offers that might be beneficial to you.

Get Prequalified

When buying a home it's a good idea to get prequalified. It helps the home buying process go smoother. When you are pre-qualified for a mortgage you'll know much better about how much house you can afford and what price range you can shop. Plus, real estate agents want to know if you have been pre-qualified when they work with a client. It's just better to be pre-qualified.

Knowledge is Power for the Home Buyer

 

The bottom line is that you want to be happy with your home purchase. That means buying the right home at the right price using the right mortgage and interest rate for you. The more you can know and understand about home buying and mortgages the better. Hopefully this list of tips is helpful, whether you're a first time home buyer or haven't bought a home in a while.

If you have any further questions or want to know more feel free to ask us. Also, here are some helpful resources that may be useful to you.

Useful Mortgage Resources:

  • Mortgage rates – Browse mortgage rates for various mortgage products.
  • Loan and Savings Calculators – Crunch the numbers. How much home can you afford? What should your down payment be? Check out our calculators below!
  • Mortgage Products - Browse mortgage products.
  • Mortgage Application - Are you ready for the next step? Apply for a mortgage.

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