Preparing for Homeownership in Ten Steps

By
Real Estate Agent with Keller Williams Realty Professionals MN Broker #40288835

 

Preparing for Homeownership in Ten Steps

 

 1.Decide what you can afford. The best way to do this is with a visit to your favorite lender – that way you will know what price ranges you can search in.


2. Get your credit in order. Obtain a copy of your credit report to make sure it is accurate and to correct any errors immediately. A credit report provides a history of your credit, bad debts, and any late payments.


3 Determine your mortgage qualifications. How large of mortgage do you qualify for? Also, explore different loan options — such as 30-year or 15-year fixed mortgages or ARMs — and decide what’s best for you.

4 Get preapproved. Organize all the documentation a lender will need to preapprove you for a loan. You might need W-2 forms, copies of at least one pay stub, account numbers, and copies of two to four months of bank or credit union statements.

 

5 Weigh other sources of help with a down payment. Do you qualify for any special mortgage or down payment assistance programs? Check with your state and local government on down payment assistance programs for first-time buyers. Or, if you have an IRA account, you can use the money you’ve saved to buy your fist home without paying a penalty for early withdrawal.

 

6 Calculate the costs of homeownership. This should include property taxes, insurance, maintenance and utilities, and association fees, if applicable.

7.Develop your home wish list. Separate the needs from the wants and understand that you can get some of each but maybe not all of the above.

8 Select where you want to live. Compile a list of three or four neighborhoods you’d like to live in, taking into account items such as schools, medical facilities, parks, cultural events.

9 Start saving. Do you have enough money saved to qualify for a mortgage and cover your down payment?  Ideally, you should have 20 percent of the purchase price saved as a down payment. Also, don’t forget to factor in closing costs. Closing costs — average between 2 and 7 percent of the home price.


10. Contact a REALTOR®. For help in the Brainerd Lakes Area of Minnesota- call Kathleen Lordbock with Keller Williams Realty Brainerd Lakes at 218-831-8001.

 

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Welcome from the Brainerd Lakes - where outdoor and indoor recreational opportunites abound. Looking to buy on one of our many lakes? Ready to move up or down?  Having trouble selling your home? 

Call me!

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Rainer
53,538
Jayne Williamson, REALTOR, Broker, GRI
Keller Williams Realty Mountain Partners, Hendersonville, NC - Hendersonville, NC

Great points Kathleen!  Suggested for a feature.

Jan 29, 2011 01:56 PM #1
Rainmaker
290,574
Kathleen Lordbock
Keller Williams Realty Professionals - Baxter, MN
Keller Williams Realty Professionals

Thank you Jayne for that!!!

Jan 29, 2011 02:37 PM #2
Rainmaker
2,951,429
John Pusa
Berkshire Hathaway Home Services Crest - Glendale, CA
Your All Time Realtor With Exceptional Service

Kathleen - Excellent lists of tips on preparing for home ownership. Thank you for sharing it.

Jan 29, 2011 03:42 PM #3
Rainmaker
323,315
Fred Cope
Reliant Realty in Nashville, TN - Nashville, TN
Looking For Homes With A Smile

Kathleen,

I spent over 25 years in mortgage finance, and you are right on target when you encourage a prospective homebuyer to get with a mortgage lender early on in the homebuying process.  I encourage REALTORS® to develop a relationship with one or two mortgage lenders, and spend their time showing homes to prospects that have been pre-approved.  A good mortgage loan officer is the most valuable tool in a REALTOR®'s arsenal. 

Jan 29, 2011 03:59 PM #4
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Suzanne McLaughlin
Sabinske & Associates, Inc. (Albertville, St. Michael) - Saint Michael, MN
Sabinske & Associates, Realtor

Kathleen, congrats on a very well-written post.  You should post more.

Dec 22, 2011 09:12 AM #5
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Rainmaker
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Kathleen Lordbock

Keller Williams Realty Professionals
central mn real estate questions?
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