Home Buying in 76180>Question Details

zcparrott, Home Buyer in 76180

My fiancé and I are wanting to buy a house, our current lease is up in January so when should we start looking?

Asked by zcparrott, 76180 Sat Jul 28, 2012

Furthermore, combined we make 53k a year and our monthly debt including car payments, credit card payments, and insurance is around 560 a month. Her credit is in the low 700's with no bad credit, and mine is in the low 600's with some bumps from credit card debt from 5 years ago which have all been taken care of. So honestly I'm not even sure if we can buy a house. Also, we are looking at houses in the NRH/Watauga area and trying to stay under 85k.

Help the community by answering this question:


1. Get pre-approved for purchase financing. It's key so you know how much of a house you can buy.
2. Never too early to start looking. Unless you know exactly where you want to live, it's a good of idea to drive around different areas at different times of day to get a feel for what neighborhood life is like.
3. 60 to 75 days before your lease expires, start looking at homes. That sounds like a long time but many landlords want tenants to renew their lease no later than 30 days before expiration so they can either lock you in for another year or give you 30-notice. (it happens). This way you have a good chance to be in a transaction at the 30-day mark and you can tell your landlord you're moving. You don't want to be negotiating a purchase when the 30-day deadline hits.
4. Make sure you work with a Realtor and loan officer who are experienced, patient, and understanding. (Like me!)

These are simple steps but they worked for recent clients of mine that are enjoying their new home!

1 vote Thank Flag Link Sun Jul 29, 2012
If your lease is up in January I wouldn't look for homes yet unless you can afford to break your lease. Deals are selling fast so it's just torture to start shopping now seriously other than getting a feel for the areas and corresponding price ranges.

I have a great loan officer I work directly with who will shoot you straight. Don't rely on a realtor for financial advise since the lending options and restrictions change daily. I can get you set up for free with realistic options so you will in a position to act when the time is right. Also he can give you advice on how to prepare over the next several months.

Call or email me anytime.

Nathan Beckey, Realtor (m) 817.691.602 (e) nathan@exclusivepropertiestexas.com
More Options. More Results.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jul 30, 2012
Great Answers.....I see an answer from a NY agent and things are different states. He suggests hiring an attorney in the beginning.

If you have any doubt about what the legal aspects are be sure to hire an attorney. However, in Texas we have standardized forms we are required to use that are written in layman's terms. If you would like an example of all the forms you will be required to sign I will send the blank ones so you can take your time to review, discuss, and decide if you want to hire an attorney.

There are certain things that are handled by attorneys during the process like the title review making sure you have a clear title to your home. Hiring a separate attorney for this may be redundant.

Finding a real estate attorney to review contracts etc. is a separate issue and encouraged should you not understand the forms you are signing.

I go over it with you as you are signing but am not an attorney and cannot give legal advice.

If you are wanting a search for mineral rights you need an oil and gas attorney.

If you want me to send you all the forms you will be signing I will be glad to email them.
Just send your email address to : dscrimshir@aol.com or text your email address to me with a short note. 817 980-1047
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jul 30, 2012
You have some wonderful answers to give you ideas about how to proceed.

The others here are correct in that at this point you should start building a team around you to help you with the process. Your first hire should be a REALTOR to help you set your goals, determine your wants and needs, and help you identify other key people to help you purchase your home.

Since you have credit questions your REALTOR will start by putting you and your fiance` together with Mortgage Lenders to help you understand the financing that is available to you.

The best advice I can give you is take your time! The resale market is moving extremely fast so there is not a point in looking at homes unless you are ready to buy and close within the next 45 days. Use the time now to work with a mortgage lender and to work with your REALTOR on determining the most important things to you and your fiance` and set realistic time frames for looking, buying, and closing.

An example is:
If your lease is up in January you should plan on closing on your new home at least 2 weeks prior to your lease ending. Doing this will give you time to smoothly transition from one home to the next.

Your REALTOR should work with you on exact time frames to purchase and close based on the home you purchase.

If you have any other questions or would like to speak further please contact me directly at 817-729-4281 or john@dfwfamilyrealty.com

John Straub
Keller Williams Realty
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jul 30, 2012
Good morning zcparrott,

First steps:

1. Meet with a Local Mortgage Banker to get prequalified for mortgage financing. The Mortgage Banker will review all facets of your loan request to answer your questions with regards to the types of loans and maximum loan amounts you could qualify for.

2. Get a referral to a good, local, real estate attorney. Call the attorney, retain the attorney so you have her information handy when you make an offer. Having that information at time of offer helps you demonstrate to the Seller how serious you are, and they will consider your offer with more interest.

3. Line up a Home Inspector. A good home inspector will scare the heck out of you: that's what you pay him for! But you'll concentrate on the fundamentals of the property: roof free of leaks, plumbing, heating and electrical up to code and in good working order. Again, when you make an offer and you have your Home Inspector ready to go, your offer will be considered with much more interest by a Seller because you truly have your "ducks in a row" and your preparation demonstrates your serious attitude about conducting the purchase transaction in a timely manner.

4. Find an experienced Local Realtor who works in your desired shopping area. A serious pro Realtor will refuse to show you homes until you are Prequalified for mortgage financing. Don't take offense! That Realtor doesn't want you to be disappointed and wants you to have a smooth experience as you shop for your new home.

Put together your Team of real estate professionals and shop 'til you drop!

Good luck!
Trevor Curran
NMLS #40140
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jul 30, 2012
If you don't already know a Realtor ask people you trust and respect for referrals. They likely won't send you to a flake. You received a lot of good replies from us but so you know any of us?
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Jul 29, 2012

Feel free to contact me directly in order to help secure your future. I will make sure you're ready prior to Jan. I will save you both time and money.
Keller Williams Realty
Real Estate Consultant/3xUS Army Vet
cell: 817-975-7258
off: 817-635-1157
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Jul 29, 2012
Warning! A prequalification is nothing compared to a comprehensive loan pre-approval. Fewer surprises.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Jul 29, 2012
The first step as many have suggested is to speak to a lender. A good one will talk with you, run the numbers, and help you know how you can improve your financial position. I know some good lender people, if you need names.

Start serious looking this fall, but in the meantime, look online or call me and I'll set up a personalized search for you...becoming familar with the market over the next few weeks will help you recognize a terrific deal when you are seriously looking.

I love the NRH/Watauga area. I'd love to help you any way I can. I'm here to help!


Small World Realty (locally owned with nationwide reach)
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Jul 29, 2012
You are asking this question at the perfect time in your process because it is time to get started on the process of getting your first home together.

1.) Get started with the loan process with a lender that won't lead you on and then give you a surprise at the end. After 33 years in the business I have seen them all. Call me for references on this if you like.

2.) Talk to Realtors and make a decision who you are going to hire to get the job done for you. Don't just start looking without someone to represent you that you feel comfortable with.

3) After signing with a Realtor to do the job and getting a prequalification from the loan officer the search begins. Your Realtor will be able to send searches that match your specific criteria i.e. Area, Schools, Price, Square Footage etc. Even though you may not be ready to move yet it is a great help to start seeing these places online, check out the neighborhoods etc. so you will be a more informed buyer. If you want to buy and move out of your apartment at the same time it is probably a good thing to wait until November to get in the car and go inside homes. Inventories are low at this time so the homes priced right are selling fast and when you go look you need to be ready to write the contract to close in 45 days or less. However looking online at what your Realtor sends you will help you see what you get for you want to spend.

I have 33 years experience and work the area you are interested in. I work with several very reputable loan officers and will be honored to be interviewed for the job. I also have references !!
817 980-1047
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Jul 29, 2012
I agree, it is never too early to start looking; this does not mean you need to make an offer on a home, it just simply means that you need to nail down the important aspects that go along with making a homebuying decision, such as the city you want to live in, the school district and its rating, commute time to work, proximity to shopping, recreation, etc.. Once this phase is accomplished, you may focus more on specific homes located in your desired area.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Jul 29, 2012

From what you have said it doesn’t look you should have much problem getting prequalified for a loan. You need a minimum of a 640 credit score to qualify for an FHA loan. You should contact a lender right away. If there is a problem they can tell you what you need to do to get your credit score up between now and the first of the year.

As far as looking for a home what’s on the market now probably won’t be on the market when you are ready to buy in December. I would state looking on line now just to give you an idea of what’s out there in your price range. The end of September first of November I would start really looking.

Thanks for Your Question,
John Reaves
Keller Williams Realty
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Jul 29, 2012
I just read your question a second time. You should give yourself approximately 60 days for the process. You will want your closing scheduled around the time your lease is up.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Jul 29, 2012
The first step is finding out whether you qualify for financing and how much you qualify for. From there you know what you can do and how much you can afford. It generaly takes a few weeks to find the home you would like to put an offer on and another 30-45 days to close. You want to allow yourself some "look" time as well. It would be a good idea to start looking online at homes now so that you can get a feel for what you like and what you don't like. I would be happy to assist and walk you through the process. Feel free to call or email any time.

Shelly Sierra, REALTOR®
Fathom Realty

Direct: 214-686-4865
Email: shelly@fathomrealty.com

Website: http://sierradfwrealestate.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Jul 29, 2012
Your best bet is t speak with a mortgage broker or bank first. They may be able to qualify just your wife if your credit is poor, either way they will guide you accordingly. I always recommend getting a feel for the market 6 months in advance this way when you are ready you are up on the market. You can have an agent send you new listings that meet your criteria and when it's time to push the button hopefully you will be ready. Consider visiting some open houses for now.

Christopher Pagli
Accredited Buyer Representative
Licensed Associate Broker
William Raveis Legends Realty Group
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Jul 29, 2012
Most Lenders require your FICO to be around 620-640. Depending on where your score is "low 600's", you may qualify for a home loan now. Your Fiance is okay with her score. There are other considerations that a good Lender will advise you on. I work in the areas you are looking, and would love to help you. I work with a few great Lenders that I can refer you to. I can also help you with assistance programs you may qualify for. Call, email me to discuss in more detail.

Patricia Choice
Pdchoicerealtor@att. net
Fadal -Buchanan and Associates Real Estate Services
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Jul 29, 2012
Give yourselves about three to four weeks of looking around time and another four weeks for the mortgage company to do their paperwork once you decide on a home.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Jul 29, 2012
The best thing you can do at this point is speak to a lender to make sure you qualify. Based on the information you have given, it sounds like you will, but you want to make sure that you have everything in place first. Once that is done, I would recommend seriously starting your home search around October/ November. I would bd happy to refer you to a great lender or two, so that you can get pre-qualified, and I would love to help you with your home search.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Jul 28, 2012
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