When should I buy my first house?
Only you can determine the best time to purchase a house, but this guide can help determine if you are in the correct position or need to wait a bit longer.
Buying a home can be daunting for anyone — even those who have bought houses. There are many steps, processes, and requirements, and it can seem like you’re drowning in information and decisions. But first-time home buyers enjoy some unique advantages explicitly created to help new entrants into the housing market. Here’s a breakdown of what you need to know and what you can expect during the buying process.
Know Your Budget
Before looking for homes, you’ll want to determine how much you can afford. This includes everything from monthly mortgage payments to property taxes and insurance costs. You might consist of moving expenses, closing costs, and maintenance fees. Now is perfect if you still need to set up a budget. Use online calculators to estimate how much you’d spend on each item and then add up the total.
Understand Your Credit Score
Your credit score is one of the most significant factors in whether or not you qualify for a loan. Most lenders require a FICO score of 620 or above to approve mortgages, but even if you don’t meet this standard, you can still apply for financing by getting pre-approved. Preapprovals give you a sense of what you can borrow and allow you to shop around for a better deal.
Find Out How Much House You Can Afford
Once you’ve figured out how much house you can afford, use Zillow’s Mortgage Calculator to determine your maximum mortgage amount. Then, look over your budget to see where you could cut back without cutting into essential spending areas. For example, you could save $100 per month on groceries by having a smaller fridge. Or you could reduce your cable bill by switching to basic TV packages.
Potential borrowers can find a great mortgage lending specialist by reviewing customer testimonials and service options and comparing them against various other brokers.