Condo? Fixer-upper? McMansion? Starter home? Town house? Tiny house?
Wait a sec.
Before you start looking seriously at buying ANY kind of home this spring, you'll first need to answer the single-most important question: How much home can I afford?
To answer that question, every would-be buyer needs to focus on these four things.
UNDERSTANDING YOUR FINANCES
Knowing how much you can responsibly spend to buy the home of your dreams is critical. That means getting a firm handle on your finances. What do you earn? What do you spend? How much do you have in savings? Answering these questions will help you figure out if you're financially ready for homeownership.
UNDERSTANDING THE IMPORTANCE OF CREDIT
Your credit score is one of the most important factors lenders use when deciding if you qualify for a mortgage loan. Because of its huge role in the homebuying process, it's important you understand how your credit score is compiled, how to get a copy of your credit report, and how to build your credit.
UNDERSTANDING DOWN PAYMENTS & CLOSING COSTS
You have choices when it comes to your down payment, even the possibility of putting as little as 3% down. Carefully evaluate your finances to decide how much you can afford – for your down payment and all related closing costs – and talk with your lender about what makes the most sense for you.
UNDERSTANDING MORTGAGE RATES & AFFORDABILITY
Today's mortgage rates remain near historic lows and this has an important and direct effect on how much home you can afford. Learn more
Follow this series to be ready in time for the homebuying season.
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