- Why am I buying a home?
Obviously you want – and need – to have somewhere to live. Your home is your castle, your safety, where the heart is, and all that. But why are you buying as opposed to renting? Areyou buying alone or going into it with a partner, family member, or friend? There isn’t a right answer, although it should go without saying that buying a home is a much longer financial commitment than renting — both to the space as well as to the people involved. You’re going to have to jump through a lot of hoops in order to secure a mortgage, so if you’re going to have to stretch yourself to be able to afford it, you may want to think twice. It’s also a big commitment mentally, so if you really don’t think you’re up for taking care of a home for years (and years) to come, then maybe you want to wait – or forego buying a home altogether. Don’t buy a home because it’s the Thing to Do, or because your peers are buying a home.
- How’s my credit?
Speaking of jumping through hoops, if your credit rating is poor, you’re going to have a hard time not only getting a mortgage, but getting a *good* mortgage. Which means, you’re going to pay more for your mortgage by way of higher interest rates and stricter rules when it comes to prepayment penalties. It’s not impossible to get a mortgage, and if you have a good reason to get a home, then there are ways that you can get a mortgage if you have poor credit. But your credit does make a difference as to the outcome of your mortgage process, so you’ll want to clean it up before you want to get a mortgage.
- How do I choose a lender?
If you think that the only options you have out there for mortgage lenders are the mainstream banks, then you’re in for a big surprise. There are plenty of lenders out there who only deal with mortgages and mortgage-related business, and those lenders are called monoline lenders. They typically have some advantages to the banks, such as lower interest rates and flexibility when it comes to stated income requirements. Monoline lenders are still in what’s called the “A” space, which means that they deal with well-qualified candidates, just like the banks. Read more about different types of lenders, as well as private lending options.
- What kind of loan do I need?
Every mortgage is not created equal. Yes, you have a principal and a balance and you make payments each month (or week, or however you set it up). But apart from that, there are many different loans out there to meet the needs of borrowers in a number of different situations. There are also loans geared toward investors, self-employed borrowers, and a mortgage broker can help you figure out which one is right for you.
- How do I find a realtor or any home professionals?
Realtors love to advertise. You probably have seen fliers and billboards for real estate agents, ads in local magazines and newspapers that. I’m sure you know at least one or two. But just because you know a real estate agent doesn’t mean that they’re the right realtor for you. You need a real estate agent who will fight for you, but not push you into doing anything that makes you uncomfortable. We have more tips on finding a realtor here.
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