Preparation Tips for Buying a Home within 6-12 Months

There are many things to consider when buying a home. I’ll start with the basics. Some of which may already be in the back of your mind, but now you’ve got a good starting point to reference.

  1. Get your financial house in order. This one seems to be the most obvious first step, but what does it mean?
    • Get your credit checked by a mortgage professional to start the pre-approval process. Most importantly, this is to rule out any issues that may come up with your credit. Many people don’t discover fraudulent activity on their credit until they check. Remember, it’s not all about the score! Close old accounts that haven’t been used and old loans that have been paid off, but are no longer being reported. Contact creditors to resolve any issues. It can take a few months to reflect any changes on your report, so the sooner you get to this, the better.
    • Budget.  If this isn’t already a good habit, now is a time to sit down and crunch the incoming and outgoing finances that you handle monthly. If you can show a mortgage company that you are organized, prepared, and know exactly what your finances look like, the smoother things will go.
    • Save as much as you can. The more money you have in your savings, the easier it will be to help you qualify and be more appealing in a lender’s eyes.
    • Pay off debt. At least make sure your credit card debt is paid down to at least 25% of the maximum limit of that card. If it’s maxed out, that doesn’t look good to creditors. Show that you can responsibly manage your debt.
    • Don’t open any new lines of credit. Opening new lines of credit around the time you are attempting to qualify for a mortgage could be a red flag that you are over extending your finances and could cost you points or possibly denied for a mortgage.
  2. Get pre-approved for a mortgage. I have some great referrals if you need them. Choose someone someone that you connect with, will guide you, and answer all of your questions. You should have a good understanding of how the process works, what is needed to qualify, your loan options, and what you qualify for before you are in the thick of buying a home. Then you can focus on the fun part – finding your new home!
  3. Location ideas. Start thinking of your favorite locations around town that you’d like to live. Maybe something closer to work, better schools, great restaurants and shopping?
  4. Home criteria. If you have some ideas on “must-haves” or things you’d prefer when buying your next home, jott them down. They will help when we start sifting through available homes. (example: Maybe you require a fence for the dog, at least 2 car garage, not on a busy street, etc.)
  5. Call Aubrey! Let’s get together and make a customized plan so you are ready to hit the ground running!