So you’re doing it, you have made the decision to take your hard-earned cash and invest in property! I always say, if you can stop paying the landlord and start building equity in something YOU own, why wouldn’t you do it?! But some people still wonder if the tax breaks and investment will really pay off in the long run. What if the market goes kerplunk again? My thinking: choose wisely and you’ll never regret putting your money into property. This blurb is a bit of a pep talk because if you have not purchased property yet, and if you’ve built up a down payment, it takes a leap of faith to go into escrow and close on a deal. I believe in setting expectations and educating my buyers. Let’s start with the basics.
What’s your fico? Generally, this score is the most important. If you haven’t confronted it yet, go to a free credit report website and get your score! Here is a link for more indepth information on your score. Some lenders won’t lend if your score isn’t above 640. The higher the score, the better the interest rate!! There are things you can do to improve your score but beware of scam companies that say they can improve your credit. Also, the lenders can be helpful with credit tips so make sure to follow the next step. As always, if it is too good to be true, then it is!!
For most of us, we need to take out a mortgage in order to buy a home. The sooner you get educated on what loans are available – the better. Did you know that there is first time home buyer grant? One of the lenders I just spoke with told me about it! Did you know that if you have not owned a home for two years, you might be considered a first time homeowner? So, even if you know what an ARM is, who needs a jumbo loan and how much your interest rate matters, you should still get updated on the latest laws and regulations. I know a couple of great lenders if you need them!
No surprise, hire an agent! When you make a commitment to an agent, they will make a commitment to you. There are some buyers who have a few agents working for them but they are not loyal to any. I suppose if you are searching a VERY broad area, this might be smart but otherwise, you need to work with one very good agent and sign a buyer’s representation contract with them. This means the agent will do everything they can to get you into your home. This goes beyond searching the MLS and taking more pro-active steps. Click here for more information from Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices about finding the right agent.