Buying your first home is an exciting milestone, but it can also be a time of confusion and stress. Between credit checks, hefty down payments, and unending paperwork, many people find they could use a helping hand when they first buy a home. To help set the stage, here are some helpful FAQ for first-time buyers.
Frequently Asked Questions & Answers for First-Time Homebuyers
1. Is it the Right Time to Buy a Home?
Before starting the house hunting process, it’s important to make sure you’re both financially and emotionally ready to buy a home. For starters, consider whether you’re ready to set down roots in a specific location for at least the next five years or so. If not, it’s probably wiser to rent. You’ll also want to examine your job stability, savings, credit history, and overall financial situation to ensure you’re ready to make this investment.
2. How Do I Determine What I Can Afford?
If you’re mentally and financially ready to take the leap into home ownership, you’ll first need to shop around for mortgage pre-approval. This will help you determine how much house you can afford. A mortgage pre-approval will take into account employment history, your credit background, and any assets you currently own. Once you receive a pre-approval, you can confidently enter the house hunting process and make a fantastic first impression with sellers.
3. How Much Do I Need for a Down Payment?
The down payment is a percentage that’s calculated based on the total cost of the home. This number can range from as little as 3 to 5% to up to 20%, depending on your lender and your financial ability. Generally speaking, the more you’re able to put down initially, the lower your monthly payments and interest rate will be as a result.
4. What Will My Monthly Expenses Be?
A physical house in itself is a significant financial commitment, but it’s not the entire equation. In addition to the mortgage payments, you’ll also have other regular expenses as well, including utility bills, property taxes, and interest fees. Monthly costs will depend on the size of your home, its location, and whether or not you have home owner’s association fees. In addition to fixed expenses, it’s important to prepare for the unexpected as well, such as maintenance or home repairs that may become necessary once you assume home ownership.
If you’re preparing to buy a home, put your trust in the real estate experts at Bowling & Kugler Realty in Hamilton, OH. Since 1956, they’ve provided reliable residential and commercial real estate services. Whether you’re selling a home, starting the house hunting process, or seeking a reliable commercial realtor for your business, their agency goes the extra mile. To get your home search underway, give them a call at (513) 844-8405 or visit them online.