Buying a home can be an exciting, fulfilling experience. Finding a place to call home, a place to build your life, is something that everyone desires. However, buying a home is also a huge responsibility and it can cause a lot of anxiety. The best thing to do is to be prepared. The team at Stonebridge Mortgage Group knows how nerve-wracking it can be to be a first time home buyer, and we want to assist in making at process easier and less intimidating. Here are a few helpful tips for those buying a home for the first time.
Start Saving Early for Your Down Payment
Traditionally, it is a common requirement to put 20% down. Some lenders, however, have started to require a smaller down payment – as little as in the single digits. This can still be a hefty amount of money, though. Consider this: 5% of $200,000 is $10,000. Try setting aside funds from tax returns and work bonuses. Set up an automatic savings plan and use an app to track your progress.
Determine How Much You Can Afford
Consider your income, the cost of the home, your down payment, and the monthly cost of what your home will be. Make sure the monthly cost is something you will be able to keep up with. There are many free home affordability calculators on the internet that can help you with this step.
Pick the Right House and Right Neighborhood
A single family home is good if you need the space it provides. However, if you don’t require as much space then a townhouse or condo may be better for you. Be sure to consider the neighborhood your new home is in, too. Nearby schools can affect home value. Consider the local safety and crime statistics. Find out the nearest hospital, pharmacy, grocery store, and all other amenities you’ll need. Is this neighborhood close to your place of work? Is the traffic bad in this neighborhood? Try driving through a few times to judge traffic, noise, and activity throughout the neighborhood.
Stick To Your Budget
Shop homes that are under your budget. Remember that buying a home comes with other monthly expenses and accidents that you need to be prepared for. Plan for the future. You want to avoid a mortgage payment you can’t afford.
Don’t be Afraid to Negotiate
Money saved is money earned, and negotiating can save you a significant amount of money. If there are any major repairs needed to your home, see if the seller will cover them either by fully handling them or by giving you a credit adjustment at closing. See if your seller is willing to pay for any closing costs.
These steps will help you choose the home that is right for you. Stonebridge Mortgage Group can help you decide which best fits your goals. We can also help get you pre-approved for a mortgage and help with your real estate loans and other mortgage solutions, both residential and commercial. We serve the greater Portland area and are in Gresham, Oregon.
Call us today at 503.661.5580 to get started on buying your first home.