What are the steps you must take when buying a home?
Whether you’re a first-time homebuyer, you’re buying your second home, or you’re looking for an investment property, the first step is to get pre-qualified. Everybody typically does the fun stuff like look at properties online, but getting pre-qualified is the first step you must take.
There are three main factors that can affect your qualification.
The first is your credit. Most programs require you to have at least a 580 FICO score to qualify.
The second factor is your income. You need to be employed for at least two years in the same industry. Not the same job—the same industry. For example, if you work in construction and switch companies but you continue working in construction, that’s perfectly fine. If you go from working construction to working at a bank, the clock gets set back two years. Your income determines your debt-to-income ratio, and that determines how much you’ll be able to qualify for.
The third factor is the down payment. Different programs require different down payment amounts. With the new government down payment assistance programs, you can put as little as 0% down. There are also FHA programs for first-time homebuyers and conventional programs that offer 5%, 10%, or 30% down.
Once you complete the pre-qualification step, then you can start looking at properties and interviewing agents. Getting pre-qualified is easier than you think. It can be done either over the phone or in-person. If you need help, give me a call so we can help you know where you stand.
If you have any other questions about this topic or you’re thinking of buying or selling a home soon, don’t hesitate to reach out to me. I’d be glad to help you.