Purchase a Home
Purchasing a home is a very exciting time, and being well prepared will help you make better decisions. Take this opportunity to learn more about home buying and the mortgage process. Below and throughout this site, you will find information that will help you with the purchase of your new home.
Am I really ready to buy?
Buying a home offers many advantages, one of the most significant being that it allows you to build equity (ownership) when you pay your mortgage each month. A common myth is that monthly mortgage payments are more expensive than rent. But, in many cases, mortgage payments can be even less than rent. When considering home ownership for the first time, you need to decide whether buying makes financial and practical sense for you right now or if you are better off renting. Consider both the advantages and disadvantages to renting as well as buying, and weigh the pros and cons for your particular situation.
How much “house” can I afford?
The first step toward finding the right home is to quickly compute your purchasing power and determine how much you can afford to pay each month. This saves you time by allowing you to focus on homes in your price range.
Some up front costs include:
Down payment: Typically ranges from 3-30% of the cost of the house. The more you can put down, the greater equity you will have in your home and the lower your monthly payment will be. For down payments less than 20% you may also need to pay mortgage insurance.
Closing Costs: Typically range from 2-6% of the loan amount depending on your area.
On-going Costs: Your housing costs can include the following:
Monthly mortgage payment
If applicable - Flood Insurance
If applicable - Property taxes
How much can I get pre-qualified for?
Before you go looking for a home, you should see if you are financially able to get a mortgage and get an estimate of what you pre-qualify for from a lender. If you are working with a real estate agent, getting pre-qualified lets them know you are a knowledgeable and serious buyer.
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