7 Tips for First Time Home Buyers

by Jul 13, 2016

Here are 7 Tips for first time home buyers. Ralph Waldo Emerson, American essayist and poet, once said that the future belongs to those who prepare for it. Sage advice for homebuyers who need to lay the necessary groundwork to buy the home of their dreams.

You have saved enough money for the down payment on a house in South Jersey and the extras such purchase might entail. How do you now go from looking online at dozens of houses for sale in your price range to actually making an offer?

Get pre-qualified before house hunting, talk to different lenders and see not only who offers the best rates and terms, but also manageable fees and costs. Lender fees can vary quite a bit from one to the next. The mortgage industry has three main types of lenders: big banks and credit unions, mortgage bankers and mortgage brokers.

The big banks have checking and savings accounts and car loans and home loans and just about anything you might need for your financial needs. Mortgage bankers focus on home loans and they use their own funds to make loans. Mortgage brokers contract with banks, mortgage bankers and private lenders to arrange for home loans. Pre-qualification gives you great information about how much house you can afford and allows you to move quickly if you find the right house.

Get pre-approved is the next step, writes Investopedia, and it tends to be much more involved. “You’ll complete an official mortgage application (and usually pay an application fee), then supply the lender with the necessary documentation to perform an extensive check on your financial background and current credit rating. (Typically at this stage, you will not have found a house yet, so any reference to “property” on the application will be left blank).

From this, the lender can tell you the specific mortgage amount for which you are approved. You’ll also have a better idea of the interest rate you will be charged on the loan and, in some cases, you might be able to lock in a specific rate.

With pre-approval, you will receive a conditional commitment in writing for an exact loan amount, allowing you to look for a home at or below that price level. Obviously, this puts you at an advantage when dealing with a potential seller, as he or she will know you’re one step closer to obtaining an actual mortgage.”

Get professional help – Find a realtor you can trust. Yes, you have unprecedented internet access to sellers’ information, but a realtor has years of experience that can help you with everything from the area, the appraising of a dwelling, the paperwork, the comparisons, and negotiation on price.

If you need help finding a qualified agent, Anchored Homes knows many agents we can refer you to for your first home purchase. Keep in mind that can also help you find your dream home.  Sometimes we allow buyers to choose finishes in the house before we have finished the rehab, that way you can customize the home to your liking.

Check out the schools – What is the reputation? Can the kids walk to school? Is there an alternative school available, like a charter school or parochial school if the public school does not work out? As you walk the neighborhood, look at the houses in the neighborhood. Are the homes well maintained? Are the lawns mowed and edged? Where are cars parked? Talk with your neighbors. Are they friendly? Do they have kids? Do they have anything good or bad to say about your house of interest?

 Hire a home inspector – You should hire your own home inspector, preferably an engineer with experience in doing home surveys in the area where you are buying. His or her job will be to point out potential problems that could require costly repairs down the road.

 Beware of sleeper costs – Comparing the monthly mortgage payments to paying rent is only part of the story. The bank may require property taxes and insurance to be part of the monthly mortgage payment. Then there’s the unexpected. When a couple I know first moved into their house, the front, cement porch collapsed costing them $1.500 to repair.

Read the papers. Only a fool signs papers without reading. Make sure you understand your obligations. If you feel insecure, hire a real estate attorney. This is the biggest purchase you may ever make. Do it the right way.

The mission of Anchored Homes is to rejuvenate neighborhoods and increase the standard of living by improving the overall quality of housing for the residents. Call us today and let’s see how we can work together!

We not only purchase property but we also sell our homes directly to buyers, many of which are completely renovated and in move-in condition. Whether you are dreaming of becoming a first time home buyer or looking to upgrade your current home, we can help.  If we don’t have a home to sell directly to you, we can connect you with a licensed agent who can help you find your dream home!

For homes for sale Egg Harbor Twp NJ call us today at 609-961-1116

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