For many, becoming a homeowner is a life-long dream and it can be an exciting and overwhelming time all rolled into one. As with any major financial purchase, it is always best to be prepared and do your due diligence before rushing in and signing on the dotted line. Here are some tips to help you be the most informed new homeowner you can be:
Determine your mortgage payment comfort zone. Take the time to go over your finances and budget and determine what monthly mortgage payment you will be comfortable making. Keep in mind the unexcepted expenses that can pop up when you are a homeowner as well as all the bills (property taxes, water, etc.) that you will now be responsible for on a regular basis.
Get pre-approved early in the process. It is best to start working with a One Link Mortgage Professional early in your homebuying process. They can give you advice after viewing your financial documents and online application in case anything needs to be corrected (think errors on your credit report) or help you put a plan together if your debt needs to be reduced. Both of these will take time, so speaking to a broker as early as possible is always advised if credit or debit repairs need to be made. Once you have been pre-approved, you usually have a period of 90 to 120 days where your rate will be held for you, so this is when you should begin house hunting and not before. Being pre-approved for a mortgage lets you know how much you can afford to spend on your new home and shop with confidence.
Get your documents together. Documents typically needed for a pre-approval include a letter of employment or paystubs, identification, proof of downpayment, proof of assets and information about any debt you may have. Any delays in getting these documents to your mortgage broker may slow down the pre-approval process.
Do not make any major life changes. Do not make any major purchases, apply for new credit, or change/quit your current job. Any big changes to your employment or finances could negatively impact your pre-approval. Wait until after you have signed the mortgage commitment and moved into your new home.
When starting down the road to homeownership, planning ahead makes all the difference. Ensure you give yourself enough time to get your finances and paperwork in order before reaching out to start the pre-approval process with a One Link Mortgage Broker. Contact one today for a no obligation discussion about your mortgage needs.