Before You Buy a Home: Real Estate Tips

before-you-buy

Freddie Mac recently released its latest survey, and the news was good for prospective buyers. Record low mortgage rates have combined with descending home values to create a buyer’s paradise. Unfortunately, many borrowers are having trouble securing loans. Before you buy a home, consider the following real estate tips.

Why it’s So Hard Nowadays

Just a few years ago, banks were passing loans out to all-comers; however, that all changed when the foreclosure crisis hit. Now lenders have implemented very tough requirements that make it hard to get approval. These standards are centered on three big factors: your credit rating, your job and your cash flow. Before you buy a home, learn how to keep from hurting your chances.

Your Credit Report

Get the latest copy of your credit report to ensure that everything is accurate. Even a few minor errors could keep you from securing a mortgage. If something is amiss, file a written or online report to get it corrected.

Your Job

Lenders value economic stability above all else. If a new job opportunity becomes available, you’d be best served to stay put at least until you are able to close on your home. Job security is an important part of the borrowing process. Even if the new job pays more, the lender is likely to view the move as risky.

Your Cash Flow

Before the economic downturn, you could get a mortgage without much of a down payment. That has changed. Nowadays you will be asked to put up roughly 20 percent of the home’s worth. If you have this kind of money, you’re in good shape. If not, you may have to make other arrangements. Before you buy a home, look into local home buying programs. Not only do many of these require much lower credit scores and offer lower mortgage rates; they often allow borrowers to take out smaller, second mortgages which can be used to fund down payment and closing costs.

By Nathaniel Hutchinson (17 Posts)

Nathaniel Hutchinson is KingofHowTo.com's Business and Financial Expert .