So you have reviewed your New Year Resolutions and decided this is the year to purchase a home of your own in Plano or Allen or surrounding communities and stop paying rent!
Now is the best time to start preparing – even if you think it is a few months away – there are things you can do now to get “all of your ducks in a row”!
- Check your credit
- You can obtain a copy of your credit report from the 3 major credit reporting bureaus: TransUnion, Equifax, and Experian. Once you receive the reports review them carefully to check for any errors that might need correcting and review any negative information. These reports should also include information about how to improve your credit and correct errors. The higher your credit score the easier it will be for you to qualify for a loan.
- Consult a lender
- The sooner you visit with a lender, the quicker you will know the path you should be on – how much to save, how much you need to be earning, and a lender can assist with reviewing your credit and helping you improve your score (as well as give you a realistic time table for achieving the credit score you need to be pre-qualified for your loan).
- A lender will also help you explore assistant programs that you may qualify for. It is possible that you can find a down payment assistant program or a discounted loan program.
- Start saving
- One trick is to save the difference between your rent and what you estimate your mortgage payment will be—or more. You’ll need cash reserves to buy a home, and you’ll need to prove to a lender that you can afford housing payments that may be higher than what you’re currently paying in rent.
- Earn extra cash
- If you’re low on cash, as most first-time buyers are, consider taking drastic steps to cut spending. Or try out some ways to increase your income, such as selling some of your stuff or taking a part-time job.
- Start looking at neighborhoods
- Unless you already know where you want to live, take the time to visit a variety of potential neighborhoods. You’ll want to scout out ‘hoods that meet your needs in terms of transportation options and other amenities. Exploring different locations will help you narrow your priorities. Also be sure to visit neighborhoods at different times of the day and different days of the week. And try out your various commuting routes at different times and days of the week.
- Attend a seminar or take classes on buying a home
- Lenders, agents, local government and non-profit agencies often offer free seminars that explain the home-buying process and prepare you for the financial responsibility of owning a home.
- Decide how much you want to spend
- A lender can give you an idea of how much you can borrow, but you have to create a personal budget to decide how much you will be comfortable spending on your mortgage payment.
- Visit open houses
- Try to avoid walking through homes you simply can’t afford—you don’t want to fall in love with something and then be dissatisfied with all other options. Going to open houses early in your search will let you see what’s available in your area that might fit your budget. You can then begin to see what matters most in your decision: the location, room to entertain or outdoor space.
- Interview REALTORS®
- Now of course we believe this is the first step you should make! And we would like to suggest you call us first – we can help you find a lender and guide you through all of the steps we have discussed in this article. Remember this is the biggest purchase of your life time and you want to be sure that the agent that is working with you has YOUR best interest at heart and is truly working for you. Many buyers think if they work with the listing agent of the home they are interested in they will have a smoother transaction (less agents involved) – but the truth is an agent that is working for you first and foremost will always “have your back”! Learn more about Keith & Reechia here, then contact us and let’s talk!
Helping you buy your home is our goal,
Getting you through the process is our expertise!
Homes for Sale in Allen, TX