Posted on November 23, 2017 by
Buying a home is a big decision. Not only is this the place that you and your family will live for the foreseeable future, but it’s also probably one of the biggest financial choices you’ll make in your life. Knowing this, it’s important that you do your research before you decide to take out a specific home loan. So to help you make the best possible choice for yourself or your family, here are three things you should know before you seek to take out a home loan.
What You Can Afford
When you’re in the very early stages of looking for a home, you may only be focused on what you want in the house. And while these are great things to know, many people find that their wishlist is often tampered down once they realize what they can actually afford. To help you find out what your home buying budget should be, Krystal Beers-Miller, a contributor to Quicken Loans, recommends using a mortgage calculator to see how buying a home at a particular price could affect your monthly budget. In general, you shouldn’t try to get a home loan for more than 28 percent of your post-tax monthly income. So if the home you’re considering buying will cost more than this, you may want to reevaluate your home choice.
What Your Credit Looks Like
One of the biggest factors that will determine what your home loan looks like with regards to interest rates is your credit. If you have great credit, you can expect to get a better interest rate than if you have questionable credit. And if your credit is too bad, Justin Pritchard, a contributor to the Balance, shares that you may not even be able to qualify for a decent home loan in the first place. To ensure your credit is where it should be, begin working now toward strengthening your credit. This could include making your payments on time, not taking out any more lines of credit, and not spending too much on the lines of credit you currently have open.
What Your Down Payment Options Are
While many people know that it’s ideal to be able to put 20 percent down as a down payment for a home loan, Crissinda Ponder, a contributor to BankRate.com, writes that this often isn’t a necessity in today’s market. Although you’ll be better off if you’re able to put around 20 percent down, you can often find a home loan that will work with you for much less as a down payment. Just keep in mind that the more money you’re able to put down at the beginning, the easier the entire home purchasing process will be, including what your final cost for your home will look like.
If you’re looking to buy a home soon, use the tips mentioned above to make sure you get the best home loan possible.