Home Buying Checklist: Steps to Buying a Home
Buying your first home can be surely an exciting step and one of the most important decisions you are going to make in your whole life.
Many people get excited when deciding to buy a home, which can make the starting of the process a little frightening.
That is the reason we have compiled a list of tips you have to look up for when you buy a new home. The list provides a lot of tips to help you through the process.
Start making a list. Check it as often as you can.
When you decided to purchase a home, surely you have a lot of options to choose from. That is why it is very important to make a list to determine your wants and your needs.
For example, you want a backyard, a great neighborhood, and a school district. These things can be listed as ‘must haves’ for your new home.
Next thing you would want to do: creating a list of things that aren’t that necessary but can definitely add more to your experience. Fireplace, a finished basement, or a pool can be listed as your wants.
Once you have compiled these lists, it is time to start creating your budget.
Know What You Can Afford and Your Available Budget
This is one of the most important steps when buying a home. It can be really heart broking when you find your perfect home only to realize that it’s way out of your budget. Determining what you can afford can be a great help to narrow down the options.
Looking at the finances can help you determine how much you make throughout the year. You may get bonuses but you can’t take them into the account. Because sometimes bonuses can change throughout the year.
There are some other important things you should consider when planning your budget:
- Your Monthly bills
- Monthly mortgage payments
- Closing costs
- Your annual income
- Get Pre-Qualified for a Loan
When you purchase a home, you will need a lot of documents that show your credit score, your annual income, financial history, and all your obligations. Sure, that will take you some time, but it’s an important step to make the home buying process easier.
If you get pre-qualified for a loan, you can narrow down your search once you know how much you are allowed to take from lenders.
To get pre-qualified, you will need these below documents:
- Government-issued ID
- Wage and Tax Statements from the past 2 years
- Paycheck stubs from the last 30 days
- Proof of your incomes
- Tax returns from the past 2 years
- Recent bank statements
- Long-term debts
If you manage to have a strong credit score and steady income you can get pre-qualified for a home loan. But, if your credit score isn’t how you wanted to be, you have a lot of options to increase it:
- Always pay your bills
- Apply for credits only when needed
- Apply for new credit only when needed
- Keep your credit balances below 30%
Once you get pre-qualified for a loan, it is the right time to decide on the loan you want to apply for.
Process of Getting a Loan
It depends on your credit score or your finances, which is why there are a lot of loan options you can choose from:
- Traditional loans
- Federal Housing Administration (FHA) loans
- VA and Rural housing loans
Once you decided on a loan, you will have to determine how long you want to pay the loan, how much you want your monthly payment to be, and how much interest you are willing to pay. To help with all these things, you can use a mortgage calculator.
The next thing we all want to do is: searching for homes!
Start the search process
This can be the most fun part of the process. Now that you figured out your budget, you’ve been pre-approved for a loan – you can start searching for houses that meet your criteria.
This is where top real estate agents can help match you to your perfect home. They have experience and can help you get a better idea of meeting your needs. A real estate agent can give you expert advice on how to move forward with purchasing your dream home.
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