Home Buying in 32211>Question Details

Benjamin Lugo, Home Buyer in Florida

When buying a home for the first time, whats my first step?

Asked by Benjamin Lugo, Florida Thu May 26, 2011

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Answers

18
Your very step is...

Make sure you are ready - psychologically and financially. Ask yourself the following questions: Do I have steady income? Is my debt lower than my total income? Do I have enough money to pay for the down payment and closing costs? Am I working hard enough to improve bad credit?

A house needs constant care and attention. Also ask yourself if your budget will allow for unexpected repairs and upkeep. Once you can honestly answer "yes" to these questions, you are several steps ahead of the game and that much closer to becoming a homeowner.
3 votes Thank Flag Link Sun May 29, 2011
Step one, get pre-qualified for a mortgage. Not pre-approved, actually qualified. That means meet with a local lender, not someone you find online, and provide them with all the information they need as well as documents to substantiate what you say. That way you will know how much you can pay for a home according to the underwriters guidelines, as well as what the approximate monthly payment will be, (Don't forget to add property taxes and homeowners insurance divided by 12 so you know the full amount), and what YOU will feel comfortable paying each month for a mortgage payment based on your own budget projections.

A full pre-qualification will provide you AND the seller with confidence that, once you find the home you want, you will actually be able to close and buy it. That goes a long way in this market and will make any offers you make more attractive.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu May 26, 2011
It is important for buyers to get pre-approved before they began searching for a home or even an agent. However, my advice for any homeowner is to seek out a HUD Approved Housing Counseling Agency and attend a Home buying class (8 hour class). There is a lot of information available on the internet that can help home buyers in the process of purchasing, however, a home buying class literally walks the buyer through the entire process of purchasing a home. These classes are FREE and allow the home buyer to know what to expect during the process, hopefully making the process smoother for any home owner.

Another advantage of attending a home buying class with a HUD Approved Housing Counseling Agency is the class reviews the qualifications for First-Time Home buying programs (NSP, City/County programs, etc...) in that area and if those qualifications are met the buyer will receive a certificate of completion. In my opinion, a good home buying experience begins with knowing your options and attending one of these classes will present those options to you.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Jun 3, 2011
The first step in buying a home for the first time is making sure that you can afford the home you plan to purchase. Even if you haven’t already found the home of your dreams, you probably have a fairly good idea of the type of home you would like to purchase. However, you may or may not realize how much you can actually afford to spend on housing each month. Surprisingly, speaking to a lender about your financial situation may not be the best place to start.

Lenders look at your debt-to-income ratio and not necessarily at your day-to-day spending habits. Therefore, they will know if you have several credit cards that are responsibly maintained and a car loan that was paid off in full last month. But they may not realize that you opt to spend several hundred dollars each month on the latest fashions or videos. Begin tracking where and how your money is being spent and how much of that spending can or will be curtailed when you purchase a home.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jun 2, 2011
When I am looking to buy another home, I go to Sunday open houses in the area I think I might want to buy.
Bring a notebook and a camera. Ask a lot of questions, write down a lot of answers, interview the agents working the open houses to see how comfortable you are with them, and then go home and review what you learned. Best FREE education available for a new home buyer


DAVID COOPER. Foreclosure and Bank REO Buyer's Agent at Verticle Realty-Las Vegas. 35 years experience. FReee List +1-7024997037...davidcooper@lasvegaswinner.org
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jun 2, 2011
Good to see that question! Absolutely, your first move to make is a call to a reputable lender, you'll learn qualified price range, estimated monthly payment, interest rate, required down payment, funds,etc. Not only will you have a true idea of what you should be looking at, you'll be armed with an important weapon in the home buying process, a solid pre-approval! I just closed a home in Fla for a buyer from here by referring her a good buyer's agent and having her pre-approved.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jun 2, 2011
I love the call me answers. Bad grammer and desperation all mixed into one.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon May 30, 2011
The first step is to figure out where you want to be as far as location. Then you should find a good Mortgage Banker
to assist you with a Pre-Approval. This will provide you with a range of buying power. You will need to provide your Mortgage Banker with W-2 form, Current pay stubs, and verification of assets, so be prepared. After you have your Pre-approval letter you can then find a local Realtor who will show you properties you like in your qualification range. Once you find the perfect property you will put in an offer- good luck!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri May 27, 2011
Benjamin, Great Question~

First, look around on the Internet to get an idea of what you are interested in as to area and type of property. Then get a pre-approval letter. That will let you know what price range you can look in. Now you are prepared to begin.

Now you need a REaltor who is knowledgable in the area and can guide you thru the process. There is nothing more fun than working with a 1st Time Home Buyer!

Debbie Albert, PA
Keller Williams Treasure Coast
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri May 27, 2011
Make sure you visit with a few lenders to get a pre-qualification or advice on how to be prepared for the homebuying process. Good luck!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri May 27, 2011
Hi Benjamin:

Like the others have said... It is important to talk to a mortgage lender or bank- to determine what you can afford. Next, I suggest that you decide WHERE you want to live. Location is the most important aspect of buying real estate in my opinion.

Another good idea is to talk to several real estate agents that specialize in the are that you choose. The Internet is loaded with real estate related information to make your search for lenders, property and agents very simple.

Mott Marvin Kornicki, Broker
Waterway Realty of Florida

786-229-7999 Cell-Text
http://waterwayrealty.sef.mlxchange.com
info@waterwaysrealty.com ≈ E-Mail

8811 Harding Avenue | Surfside, Florida 33154
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri May 27, 2011
Hi Benjamin:

Like the others have said... It is important to talk to a mortgage lender or bank- to determine what you can afford. Next, I suggest that you decide WHERE you want to live. Location is the most important aspect of buying real estate in my opinion.

Another good idea is to talk to several real estate agents that specialize in the are that you choose. The Internet is loaded with real estate related information to make your search for lenders, property and agents very simple.

Mott Marvin Kornicki, Broker
Waterway Realty of Florida

786-229-7999 Cell-Text
http://waterwayrealty.sef.mlxchange.com
info@waterwaysrealty.com ≈ E-Mail

8811 Harding Avenue | Surfside, Florida 33154
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri May 27, 2011
Couldn't agree more with the others. Making sure that you are pre-qualified and have the money first! Otherwise you can set yourself up for disappoint when you find your perfect home, but end up not being able to qualify for it. Not to mention, when you are pre-qualified the ball is in your court and greatly improves you and your Realtor's ability your to negotiate. Not only with price, but the best terms in your sales contract.
Web Reference: http://www.JaxListings.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri May 27, 2011
Ben,
I looked at your profile for an email address, but did not see one. Send me an email and I will send a worksheet I made for my realtors describing the different mortgage types and their main points. I compared FHA, USDA, VA, and conventional based upon required down payment, qualifiaction requirements and other important details.
kevenbrennan1@comcast.net
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu May 26, 2011
Benjamin,
The first step is to get with a good lender who can explain the different mortgage options, clearly explain the differences, and help you decide the best path for your particular situation.
Most likey the deciding factor will be based on costs to close and monthy payment, but these can vary widely between different homes and different mortgage programs. Either way, getting the basic idea about what willl be needed to qualify and what price range or geographic area to shop is the first step to take in the process. Getting an approval letter in hand is the next step as most realtors will not work with you and no selers will accept and offer without financing approval
If you are not working with a lender, send me a note. I work with a lot of first time home buyers and will point you in the right direction and help answer some of your questions. Whether you contact me, or any other lender, we will be asking for the same items as part of the approval process. You may want to start gathering the following documentation:
1) last 2 yrs W2 - or tax returns if self employed
2) last 30 days pay stubs
3) last 60 days bank statements
4) most up to date 401k, IRA, or brokerage account statements

Feel free to contact me and good luck. There are a lot a great homes on the market right now and interest rates are at historical lows.
Keven
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu May 26, 2011
Mr Lugo I'm a Realtor here in Jacksonville I was a loan officer a few years ago beside being a Realtor.First its always a good idea to speak to a mortgage broker I know several if you like to speak to one.There are several things that may impact you buying experience,its all a simple process if you speak to any good agent.My name is Marc Cameron 904-566-2864 you can call me with any questions even if you do not use me.I love my job I sell happiness everyday best job in the world.My email is marccameron7@yahoo.com.Good luck my friend hope all works out if you need referrals from past customers I can provide them if you like.If you are looking for short sales or foreclosures I can help I'm an expert in that area that is 90% of my business there are great deals out there.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu May 26, 2011
Hey Benjamin,

Lender, lender, lender... As the others have said, you'll need to speak with a lender to get pre-approved for your mortgage loan, unless you're buying the property with cash. Once you've got your pre-qualification letter in hand, you're ready to do some homework on the computer (we'll help with this), choose you top picks, then go out and take a look at your favorite properties in person.

Would love to help you with it all ~ just call.

Lynn Brier-De La Cruz, REALTOR, LMC
904-343-8586
Coldwell Banker Vanguard Realty
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu May 26, 2011
The best first step, I can think of, is to confer with a mortgage lender, and find out what you could be approved for. See if it makes sense to get a preapproval, so that you know how much home you can comfortably shop for.

If your credit needs improvement, it will give you time to repair your credit, if not you'll be ready to begin looking for a new home.

Good luck.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu May 26, 2011
Alan May, Real Estate Pro in Evanston, IL
MVP'08
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