How to Buy A Home the Smart Way

If you’re about to take the plunge into buying a home, you’ll want to be ready for what’s about to come. It can be a breeze of a process, or a long, drawn-out, painful one if you don’t do it right. It’s best to buy a home quick and smart. Usually, it can take anywhere from two to three months, sometimes longer, and sometimes shorter depending on what type of market you are in. Check out how we advise to buy a home quickly and wisely. 

  1. Let Uncle Sam help

Saving for a downpayment is one of the toughest parts of buying a home. Luckily, the government offers more than 2,200 down payment assistance programs. These are programs offering grants, tax credits, and low-interest loans. A ton of buyers don’t even know these are available to them, or think they are next to impossible to get. Good news for you, they’re not that difficult to get. 

You’ll need to meet specific eligibility requirements regarding income, occupation, or credit, but buyers who use these tools save an average of $17,766 between upfront costs and lower monthly mortgage payments over the life of a loan. 

  1. Be watchful for new listings

Check the real estate websites every day to see if any new homes pop up in your area. Another tool is asking your real estate agent to set up an automated email service that alerts you to new homes that hit the market. 

Watching new listings will give you the advantage over your competition because you’ll be ready to make an offer before your completion even pulls in the driveway. 

  1. Consider a foreclosure

Many potential buyers pass right over foreclosures or bank owned properties because they are weary of the homes condition. Yes, a valid reason, but this is where the real deals are made.Despite the fact that banks won’t fix any problems found during inspections, there are still huge advantages. These usually sell for 15% lower than the homes actual value, and less than the original asking price. However, it is common to have competition when submitting offers on these homes. 

If you have the skills to put some sweat-equity into a foreclosed home, you could get the deal of a lifetime. 

  1. Have your finances in order

It takes an average of 50 days to close on a home, which is up from 40 in 2015, and they are getting longer. In order to speed this process up, you need to get pre-approved for a home loan before you give your offer. This means the mortgage you are applying for will have the lender run your credit report and look at all your assets, and have an underwriter do a review of your financial portfolio. If you pass, the lender will issue you a written commitment for financing up to a specific loan amount that is good from anywhere between 90 and 12 days. 

On the other hand getting pre-qualified means you have talked to your lender and now have a verbal commitment on the loan. This also allows a seller to refuse your offer outright. Even if you get to sign a sales contract with only a pre-qualification, it may take longer for the lender to get the loan approved than if you had pre-approval.  

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