Buying Your First Home: A Reality Checklist


Published on

Published in: Real Estate
1 Like
  • Be the first to comment

No Downloads
Total views
On SlideShare
From Embeds
Number of Embeds
Embeds 0
No embeds

No notes for slide

Buying Your First Home: A Reality Checklist

  1. 1. Buying Your First Home: A reality checklist
  2. 2. How’s your credit? <ul><li>With home loans harder to get than ever, good credit is a must. The higher your credit score, the better chance you have of getting a good loan at a competitive rate. </li></ul><ul><li>Go to to see your report </li></ul><ul><li>Spring for the inexpensive FICO score to see where you rank </li></ul><ul><li>Shoot for a credit rating of 740 or higher </li></ul><ul><li>Can you buy a home with bad credit? </li></ul><ul><li>Analyze your credit report before going for a mortgage loan </li></ul><ul><li>Five ways to improve your credit </li></ul>
  3. 3. Do you have the money? <ul><li>Check your funds. Not only do you have to have a down payment that’s been in your account for 60 days, you’re going to need reserves. </li></ul><ul><li>Run the numbers to see how much you can afford, including closing costs, insurance, utilities, taxes and unforeseen emergencies </li></ul><ul><li>Pay down your credit card debt </li></ul><ul><li>Be realistic about what you can afford </li></ul><ul><li>Are you prepared for the cost of buying your first home? </li></ul><ul><li>Down payment saving strategies </li></ul><ul><li>How much will buying a home cost me? </li></ul>
  4. 4. Get pre-approved for a loan <ul><li>Until you know how much a lender says you can afford -- and is willing to loan you -- your dream of owning a home is just a dream. </li></ul><ul><li>Get your paperwork in order – you’ll need canceled checks, bank statements, recent pay stubs, W2s and identification </li></ul><ul><li>Maintain your credit profile once you’re approved… that is, don’t take on any additional debt </li></ul><ul><li>Begin shopping for a home – and don’t fall in love with any house that’s over the amount your lender says you qualify for </li></ul><ul><li>Get on the road to prequalification </li></ul><ul><li>The top 10 questions to expect from your mortgage lender Get p requalifed with Mortgage Match’s PreQual Plus </li></ul>
  5. 5. Find a REALTOR® <ul><li>Let your REALTOR® help you find the best home for your lifestyle and budget. </li></ul><ul><li>Go to and find a Realtor in your area </li></ul><ul><li>Ask friends and neighbors for a referral </li></ul><ul><li>Interview at least three agents, get references and ask a lot of questions </li></ul><ul><li>Why choose a Realtor over a real estate agent? </li></ul><ul><li>Choose the real estate agent who represents you best </li></ul><ul><li>Find a Realtor® </li></ul>
  6. 6. Go house hunting <ul><li>You have everything all lined up… an agent, financing, and the motivation to own your own home. </li></ul><ul><li>Download’s Real Estate Search App for iPhone , Android or Windows 7 </li></ul><ul><li>Create a wish list of features you have to have </li></ul><ul><li>Bring a camera so that you remember all the important details </li></ul><ul><li>Get what you want when buying a house Shopping for the right home </li></ul><ul><li>Home shopping tips for serious home buyers </li></ul>
  7. 7. Find the right loan <ul><li>Time to apply for the loan. Do you want the stability of a 30-year fixed rate loan or the initial lower payments but potential volatility of an adjustable rate mortgage? </li></ul><ul><li>Mortgage lengths vary but are typically 15 to 30 years </li></ul><ul><li>Fixed rate loans mean you pay the same every month for the length of the loan </li></ul><ul><li>Adjustable rates may have a low introductory period but can increase once that ends </li></ul><ul><li>Compare the lender’s terms against your needs </li></ul><ul><li>Decide between an ARM and a fixed rate mortgage </li></ul><ul><li>Should you consider an FHA loan? </li></ul>
  8. 8. Make an offer <ul><li>Here’s where the rubber meets the road… when you make an offer to the sellers for the house and it’s either accepted or countered. </li></ul><ul><li>Bargain from strength – you’re pre-approved for a loan and you know what the house is worth </li></ul><ul><li>Understand what home-buying purchase contract contingencies are – they can be your safety net </li></ul><ul><li>Know when to walk away </li></ul><ul><li>Handling real estate counter offers </li></ul><ul><li>How to submit a winning bid despite multiple home offers </li></ul><ul><li>My offer is accepted – now what? </li></ul>
  9. 9. Get insurance <ul><li>Your lender will insist that you carry homeowners’ insurance in the event anything goes wrong with your new home. And you need to know whether specialty insurances are needed, such as for floods or earthquakes. </li></ul><ul><li>Figure out your needs with an insurance agent </li></ul><ul><li>Save money by raising the deductible and seeking available discounts </li></ul><ul><li>Compare policies to get the best rates </li></ul><ul><li>Insurance tips for homeowners </li></ul><ul><li>Save money on homeowners’ insurance </li></ul><ul><li>Buying homeowners insurance </li></ul>
  10. 10. It’s closing time <ul><li>It’s all come down to this… sign a huge stack of papers, write out a check for the closing costs, then congratulate yourself -- the keys to your new home are yours. </li></ul><ul><li>Give yourself time to read the documents </li></ul><ul><li>Don’t be shy about asking questions </li></ul><ul><li>Double check all fees to make sure they’re correct and reasonable </li></ul><ul><li>Avoid closing-day glitches </li></ul><ul><li>Five hurdles to closing escrow </li></ul><ul><li>Dealing with paperwork in closing </li></ul>
  11. 11. Enjoy your new home! <ul><li>Every step you’ve needed to take to become a homeowner, you’ve taken. Congratulations! The house is yours. </li></ul><ul><li>Keep all paperwork related to your purchase in a safe place so you are ready for tax filing </li></ul><ul><li>Expect the home to be “broom clean,” meaning ready to be painted and cleaned </li></ul><ul><li>Create a moving day checklist and know what you want your movers to take and what you should keep with you </li></ul><ul><li>You’re a homeowner! Now what? </li></ul><ul><li>Things to buy after moving in </li></ul><ul><li>Tips for hassle-free home remodeling </li></ul>