You can buy a home after one year of good credit rating on at least 3 accounts. 4 or 5 would be better. But don't over extend yourself. You can open up a few credit cards, even if you have to set up secured cards where you deposit money in an account up front to back it. If you're a student you should be able to get a student card or two from whomever you have bank accounts with without a security deposit. The trick is to use them a bit, but pay them off every month. If possible open up an installment account or two, maybe for merchandise where there are no payments for 6 months and maybe you can pay it off by then or shortly after. Or if you buy a car, buy something very conservative with a low payment that you can pay off, or at least pay down to less than 10 months payments remaining, buy the time you plan to qualify for a mortgage.
You also need two years of solid employment, and a down payment of at least 3.5% unless you are a vet or you and the property qualify for some of the special community programs that offer grants, or silent seconds. If you want, give me a call or an email and I can answer questions for you or guide you down that road to homeownership. Either way, good luck.
I tend to refer most people to the consumer advocate Clark Howard. He is on Talk650 AM every weekday from 10am-12pm but also accessible on the website http://www.clarkhoward.com. He has some blogs on there about finding the right credit card. Personally, I think finding one with no annual fee is the best. Pay the balance off every month and you really are not concerned about the interest rate they charge...because you'll never be paying it.
Read the book The Richest Man in Babylon. It's a book written in the 1940's as a set of articles posted in the newspaper and is the bible for all financial advisors - one of the 'must read' tenets of being financially responsible. You can find it in any used book store so you don't have to pay alot for it either. Good financial habits will take you far beyond just qualifying to purchase a home (if that was your main objective). It will make you financially secure for life.
Good question Pueyoadrian!
Anyway, I'm getting sidetracked. Getting a credit card is going to be one of your first steps toward developing credit. Other steps to take would include having bills in your name - cell phone, trash, water, electricity, gas, etc. Also, being a renter with your name on the lease for a year+ would be helpful.
Talking to a mortgage broker now, will help you buy a home within the next couple years. They'll be able to get you on the right track very quickly.
I'd say within two years you'll have the established credit, the down payment, and the income necessary to purchase your first home.
HOWEVER, there are a few things to be aware of:
1) Donâ€™t confuse a debit card or prepaid credit card with a credit card. They donâ€™t have any of the protection of a credit card if it gets lost or stolen, and they donâ€™t report anything to the credit bureaus because all you are doing is pulling your money out of your bank account, or from the money you have already deposited. Itâ€™s OK to have the card secured by an account balance just so long as they are actually extending you credit and not giving you your own money back.
2) Make sure that the card indicated that it reports to the credit bureaus. If you canâ€™t tell, call the numbers and have them tell you where it indicates this; if they canâ€™t show you where it says they report, move on to the next card.
3) Try to get a card that only charges interest on a carried balance. This might be hard to find because they will want to charge interest on your average balance even if you pay the full bill off as soon as you get the bill.
After you have one or two of these cards try to get a department store card or two. They will typically give you 10% off your 1st purchase as an incentive. Just be aware that the rates charged by department stores is usually really high, so pay off the balance as soon as you get the bill. The goal is to get three cards.
After you have had credit for a few months you will actually have a credit score! This will probably allow you to buy with FHA, USDA or VA (so long as you have enough and income stability to make the payments.) To use conventional financing you will have to have those three accounts for over a year.
Once you have the credit cards the remember are use the cards occasionally, but always pay off the balance. Best of luck with your venture. Contact me through my profile if you have any other questions.
Something to keep in mind if you find a lender that will work with a low credit score you will be paying a much higher interest rate which will limit your buying power.
Start talking to a lender now, so they can help you develop a plan and budget to reach your goal.
Never be late with a payment.
It will take you 2 weeks to 30 days to get a credit card. Add another 30 to 45 days to your billing cycle. Then another 30 days to report to the credit bureau.
Continue to use the card at least every quarter. Other things will factor in your ability to get a loan, and you may be able to use utility bills as a credit reference source.
Talk to a mortgage broker, too. I recommend a broker who gets wholesale rates from the major banks such as Dan Tharp at Comstock Mortgage: 916 257 1470.
Then, you can check your credit report by going to annualcreditreport.com. Don't bother buying into a FICO report because the FICO report your mortgage broker gets will be different.
Lyon Real Estate
NMLS # 6395
Financing Kentucky One Home at a Time