Purchasing a home turns into a fairly lengthy process – one often far longer than most imagine.
Even before you start browsing neighborhoods and checking properties, you should allot about eight weeks to financial preparation. At the same time, expect to spend roughly six months working with a local REALTOR® to learn about certain towns, regions, and the mortgage programs available to you.
Within this context, be sure to:
Check Your Credit
A mortgage – how much you can get and whether you’ll be qualified at all – is entirely contingent on your credit score. So, toward the beginning of the homebuying process, make sure to pull all three credit reports. Then, once you have this information, review it for factors that lowered your score and errors.
What happens if something dropped your score into the low 600s? Contact the credit bureau for a correction, or look to resolve the late or missed payment yourself.
Prepare Financial Documentation
For prequalification, you’ll need to present your financial history to a lender. Generally, this involves:
- Tax returns
- W-2 wage statements
- Paycheck stubs
- Bank and investment account statements
- Divorce decrees and child support documents
- Credit card statements
In line with this action, make sure your situation stays consistent through the process: Keep the same job, and keep all lines of credit open.
Make a Budget
Before seek preapproval, you’ll need to determine what you’ll be able to afford – first, as a down payment, and later, as monthly premiums and insurance. Write all of your expenses down, and include potential ones, like maintenance, you’ll encounter as a homeowner.
This isn’t the proper mortgage; rather, you’re consulting with a lender to determine what, based on your budget and financial situation, you could afford. In doing this, you become aware about which mortgage programs are a match.
Whether you’re going about the process on your own or working with a REALTOR®, get a sense of what you like and what fits into your finances. Before you browse properties, explore towns and neighborhoods for their prices, fluctuations, school systems, and housing trends. From here, you’ll be able to narrow down your search.
When you’re looking at properties in Central Connecticut, explore a range of options with By Carrier, from single-family, colonial-style homes to upscale adult living communities. Contact us to learn more.