The path to homeownership will be much easier with a bit of good advice. If you're not sure what step to take next, check out our 101 guide to buying a home to discover tips from our official loan experts. Before you allow a lender to check your credit score, you'll want to do a thorough review of your own credit report. When you receive pre-approval, your lender will tell you the maximum amount you can borrow (we'll talk more about the pre-approval process later).
But you don't need to wait for pre-approval to get a general idea of what you can afford. The Zillow Home Affordability Calculator can guide you to the right price range, taking into account your annual income, monthly debts, and projected down payment amount, among other criteria. Some of the first things to consider when buying a home are how much you want to spend, where you would like to live, and what is important to you as a buyer. Lenders generally recommend that people look for homes that cost no more than three to five times their annual household income if homebuyers plan to make a 20% down payment and have a moderate amount of other debt.
The first step in the homebuying process is to determine your financial situation and if you are in a good position to buy a home. Once you and the seller have agreed on a price, the home will be deposited, which is the period of time it takes to complete all the remaining steps in the homebuying process. The process of buying a home can be overwhelming at first, especially when it comes to navigating the various real estate regulations of different states. Your knowledge of the home buying process, your negotiation skills, and your familiarity with the area you want to live in can be extremely valuable.
Our friends over at NC Cash Home Buyers, suggests the steps to buying a home include understanding your goals and finances, working diligently through the mortgage process, and finding the right home at the right price. Be sure to include an inspection requirement in your offer if you can, so you don't end up buying a home with a shabby roof or a broken water heater. As a buyer, you have the right to obtain a home inspection prior to closing to ensure that there are no structural or material defects in the home. Now that you've decided to take the plunge, let's discuss what you can expect from the homebuying process itself.
Given the persistently low mortgage rates and low down payment loan options available to first-time buyers, it's a good time to consider buying a first home. Buying a home can be stressful at the best of times and can be overwhelming in a highly competitive market. Your real estate agent will represent you throughout the homebuying process to ensure you find the right home, ask important questions, make an appropriate offer, have the power to negotiate, and receive the necessary disclosures. Buying a home can take just a few days if you buy cash, or it can take years if you count the amount of time it takes you to save money for a down payment and decide where to live.