I agree with Terrance. There are a number of steps to take in preparing to purchase a home.
- Check out your credit score. If there are any errors on it, now is the time to correct them, before you start your search.
- Continue saving. There are expenses involved with purchasing a home such as property taxes( from the date of purchase until the end of the year, school taxes until June 30th), transfer taxes, title search and insurance, appraisal fees, loan origination fees, etc.
- Now is the time to pay off your debts, such as credit cards, car loans, etc. The less you owe, the better you are.
- Start your search for an agent to work for you, that you feel comfortable with and feel you can trust. Interview a few. You can think of them as your employee and you as the employer. You want to find someone knowlegeable that will work hard for you and look out for your best interests. Someone that will get the job done right.
- Speak to your lender and see what amount you qualify for.
- After speaking to your lender, have your real estate professional send you current listings in your search area that match your criteria. This way you can begin to see what type of homes are on the market that are within your price range.
Hope this information helps.
Brigita McKelvie, REALTOR, e-PRO, GRI
Keller Williams Real Estate, Bethlehem, PA
Office: 610-867-8888 Direct: 610-393-9424
Great suggestions from Terrance! I would like to add that you can get your credit report for free from http://www.AnnualCreditReport.Com and you can start watching my weekly 5 min Home Buying series. Although I do not cover your area...my video's pertain to anyone who wants to buy a home in PA.
There are plenty of things you can do in order to ready yourself for the purchase of a home.
- Check your credit score. In order to get the best APR you can, your score needs to be as high as you can get it. Get a report from each of the three reporting agencies. Find out if there are any erroneous items in them and let the companies know what is wrong and be prepared to prove it.
- Keep your debts to a minimum, avoid any new car loans, pay off any loans you may have now. Fewer debts is better.
- Start saving. No matter what people say you will need some funds to purchase a home. The more of a down payment you have, the better chance you will have of getting the loan at a better rate. So, cut back on dining out, quit smoking if you do (they cost a lot these days, don't they?), sell the kids (no. just kidding). Just basically tightening up your belt for a while.
- Get with an agent who will help you along the way. You can start researching what areas you would like to be in with them. They will be able to show you homes in many areas and as your date of purchase draws near, you can narrow down the areas and type of places you will be able to afford.
- About five or six months before when you want to move, get with a lender to see what you can qualify for. By this time some of the items on your credit report should be off or looking better. Ergo, higher score.
- About three or four months before the date you will want to ramp up the search and start making your choices. Closings can take up to 60 days as a minimum depending on what the circumstances are.
If you wish, I could send you automatic search results of the type of homes you wish to see in any areas. Then after some time we could narrow down your choices.
Hope that helps,
Terrence Charest, e-ProÂ®
Century 21 Associates
905 Easton Road
Willow Grove, PA 19090
Cell (Preferred): 877.614.1494
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