If you’re a first-time homebuyer, you’ll have a much easier time finding and financing your next home if you follow these tried and true tips
- Hire an experienced real estate professional:Buying a first home is a complex process. Your agent will assist you through the hurdles of neighborhood searches, comparing homes, making an offer, inspections and appraisals, as well as help you identify the best values.
- Check and repair your credit: Banks and lenders use your credit scores to make lending decisions, so make sure your credit is accurate and deficiency-free. If you are thinking of buying and have not seen your credit report yet, please contact me and I will refer you to one of the top lenders in the market and they will provide you with a free credit report.
- Get pre-approved: To get pre-approval, you have to apply for a loan and share your income, work history, debts and other information. This process should only take a few minutes and should be your first step. Your lender will confirm your down payment source, interest rate, type of loan and loan term. Only then will you know exactly how much home you can buy.
- Check out federal, state and local government incentives: Your agent and lender should always be updated and educated in the latest home buyer stimulus programs. Currently Michigan and local communities have several different programs including offering a $7500 down payment assistance. Some of these programs are a great alternative to asking the seller to contribute towards the buyers closing costs and will make the buyers offer more attractive.
- Prepare to compromise: There’s no perfect home, so you’ll have to prioritize your wish list. Older homes often need cosmetic work so expect to pay more for a home in pristine move-in condition.
- Make a long-term investment: Equity is built over time, so plan to occupy your home for several years or more. Your home is also an investment in happiness and that can be the best deal you ever make.