Home Buying in 78704>Question Details

J.j., Home Buyer in 11211

Hi Experts, I'm looking to buy my first home late this year or early next year in Austin. I am not up to

Asked by J.j., 11211 Wed Jan 28, 2009

date on what kind of programs are available for first time home buyers and was hoping you could point me to some good websites. I am looking to buy something under $300k and would have $30k cash for down payment and other costs.

My FICO score is just under 700.
I don't think we would qualify for any lower income programs because our combined income is over $100k.

thank you!!

Help the community by answering this question:


Hi JJ,
Yes, most of those first time homebuyer bond and grant programs have an income cap and your income would appear to be well over said cap. The best thing you could probably still qualify for is the $7500 tax credit from the governement.

To my knowledge, there is no income restriction on this credit, and you do not need to do anything special to receive it....well you have to do your taxes, I guess that's special.

Hope this helps. Good Luck.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jan 28, 2009
First time home buyers(FTHB) really don't have an advantage unless they utilize some low/moderate income program.
With those scores and down payment, you will be fine.
Make sure the loan officer you work with has the ability to do FHA loans.... Not all do them.
A GOOD loan officer will compare FHA & Conventional loan options for you.

Feel free to follow up with more questions.
2 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jan 28, 2009
Hi JJ!

This is an excellent question, and very common as well. You are not alone in your quest for the right program for you. You made an excellent choice turning to a resource of experts. First Time Homebuyer programs are very diverse. However, did you know that you are NOT over-qualified for most of them? Do not let anyone convince you that you make too much money for first time buyer programs.

The programs are sometimes limited by the amount of the home loan, price of the home and other factors. You are in an excellent position to purchase a home providing your DTI (Debt to Income Ratios) fall in line with the lending guidelines set forth.

You should be able to obtain a decent loan with a more than fair interest rate providing you can show a two year work history for each person included on the loan. It doesn't have to be at the same place of employment, but simply consistent and in the same line of work.

May I congratulate you and your significant other for putting yourself in a winning position by maintaining a good payment history and responsible credit worthiness. This year, the Tax Credit changes set forth by Congress will be available to you as a homebuyer and should help you out even further.

The Market in Austin is presently positioned for buyers. You are in an excellent seat for negotiating! Feel free to contact me if you have further questions or if you need further guidance or resources.

Happy Home Hunting! -Angela Sargent
Web Reference: http://AngelaSargent.com
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Feb 18, 2009
J.j., I'm hoping this stuff might help....http://www.ci.austin.tx.us/ahfc/homesforsale.htm
I'd check through the current gov loan programs here to see if you might qualify for something..

Hud site for texas/homes for sale
REO site/example
List of Bank REO sites

Good house hunting, Dunes
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Jan 29, 2009
All the answers have been great, but I want to add, the $7,500 tax credit for first time homebuyers is just that -a credit to be repaid over 15 years beginning in 2010. At least this is how the credit stands for now. There is rumbling that the repayment may be removed and it will simply be an incentive for new home buyers without the repayment requirement as an economic stimulus. Your timing for purchase may work in your favor in this regard.
Even though you plan to purchase later in the year, I still feel you should talk with a lender now!! Find one who communicates in a way you are comfortable with and one who is proactive. You need someone who has your best interests at heart and will keep in communication about the trends in the lending market so you know the best time to make your move in a home purchase. Timing can mean everything in this current market. Interest rates are very LOW right now, and good credit means everything in regard to getting the best rates. Your down payment and credit score will dictate which loan program you qualify for. Right now, with your current situation, you definitely appear to qualify for a program. But, there are strategies you can implement NOW to possibly create a better situation for you later when you are ready to make a purchase.
By meeting with a lender now, the lender should tell you what you should do to correct items on your credit report to help you get a better loan once you are ready to make a purchase. Items on your credit report may take 2 months to clear all reporting agencies; so I think you should start now in your process. Also, you should begin research on market areas you want to target - know the market so you know where and when to make your purchase move. Strategize!
I'll be glad to meet with you to start a course of action - get you moving toward creating better opportunities for the best interest rates possible, and finding the best home at the best price possible. I can assist in positioning you for the time you are ready to make your move to increase your odds of getting an even better deal!
For a list of lenders I feel confident in, please check my website for all their contact information. If you wish, I'll be happy to supply a list of questions to ask the lenders or I can meet them with you to insure you are armed with all the information you need to meet your goals., Having 3 great lenders vying for your business is also in your best interest to get the overall best deal possible.

Please give me a call to discuss more strategies. So, get ready now for your future benefit. I look forward to it!

Donna Ciccarelli
Lee Properties
Austin, TX
512-736-3124 mobile
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Jan 29, 2009

Based on the information provided, it appears you are an excellent candidate as a first time home buyer. First, thing you need to do is visit with a lender. Recommend visiting with more than one lender. If you visit with more than one lender, do that within a 30 day period, that will have less of a negative effect on your credit score. Also, if you or your wife is a veteran, before to inquire about VA loans. Also inquire, about bond money for first time home buyers, you might qualify. Bond money, tends to have great interest rates. Visit my Web site, click on Venders Tab and then go to Lender Paragraph for Lenders who will give you create advice. In addition, feel free to use this web site, it has some great home searching tools and information about buying property in Texas. Finally, if you need further assistance, please feel to contact me at your convenience. My contact information is available on my web site.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Jan 28, 2009
Dear JJ,
I am sorry for hijacking this post.

Dear Trulia,
Can;t you close this question to new answers? It hardly seems relevent in 2012, since it was initially asked in January of 2009. Thank you!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Feb 5, 2012
You sound like a very good buyer. Things are changing daily and many new products are coming on the market. However, since you are not going to buy for 6 mo.things will change and you may be wasting your time. However, if you want to get pre-qualified so that you know more accurately what your combined credit scores are and get on a mailing list most any of us in the mortgage banker field or otherwise will be happy to help you. You can go to my website and find a number of sources of general information, Visiting with a broker will be helpful in that they can give you a plan to work and visit with you about lines of credit and various othe things that you will want to know. No of this should cost you anything but some time spent on the phone.
Web Reference: http://www.timhunke.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Jun 4, 2011
JJ, the best thing to do is find a place you want to buy yourself and leave realtors out of it. You'll save money even after you hire a real estate lawyer to make sure you comply with all the government crap. First get pre-qualified with a mortgage BANKER, not a Broker. Bankers loan their companies' money, brokers stand between you and the money, costing you more. Then find a for sale by owner if possible but If not make sure you understand that real estate agents do not represent your best interests. They're there to get you to pay their seller the highest price possible. Don't be afraid to make low offers. Get the contract forms on the TREC website and go out and throw around a bunch of them...make sure they have an expiration date of a few days so you can make another soon. Make two offers a week, and only offer what would be a great deal for YOU...not anyone else. My best advise is to make multiple low offers before you purchase.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Jun 4, 2011
Dear JJ,
I just wanted to check in and see if you have made any decisions about buying an Austin home. The First Time Homebuyers $8000 Tax Credit program has been extended through April 30th, 2010. So to participate in this program you need to have a home under contract by April 30th, 2010 and close on the home by May 30, 2010.

0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Apr 3, 2010
Dear JJ,
If you are a first time home buyer and you buy/close on your new home before November 30, 2009 you qualify for the governments Tax Credit Program. This program gives up to an $8000 tax credit for first time home buyers. If you have not owned a home in the last three years you will qualify as a first time home buyer. You do not need to be a low income buyer to qualify for this program. If your seriously looking to relocate to Austin, let me know, I have a free Relocation package for you. Good luck with your home search!


Betina Foreman, Realtor
Keller Williams
1801 S. MOPAC, Suite 100
Austin, TX 78746
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Aug 19, 2009
Without knowing more about your situtation, I would think that you best bet is to go with an FHA loan. The max loan amount is $288K. Their mortgage insurance is resonable and readily available. The federal first time home buyer credit goes up to $8K. This is done by you and not the lender. To attain it you can apply for an addendum to you 2008 taxes or you can apply for it on your 2009 taxes. The government will handle this for you we have nothing to do with it. I suggest that you check with you CPA. If you don't have one, I will be happy to give you some names.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Aug 10, 2009
I live in the 78704 zip so you are looking at a good area to live. With your credit score and income you should be able to qualify with 10% down. We are seeing some 95% loans re-occuring. Even though you have a good income the amount of debt is a very important factor that will need to be checked. You can go to my website @ TimHunke.com and get some good information.
Good luck.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jul 9, 2009
Hi JJ,
There are so many websites and here is one: http://www.coldwellbanker.com but rather than relying on an impersonal website that tend to confuse buyer's with so many choices it would be prudent to actually go to a Mortgage Banker or two and ask them what can be done for you specifically. Michele Viera can be available to you by phone: 512-350-6041. She will happily take your call as I let her know you may be contacting her. They are professionals and for financing will need to be consulted eventually anyway. Also they can give you great tips on how to keep your score or even improve your score in the meantime which will result in a better rate. They are truly out to save you money. And remember the buyer's agent is essentially free to you. It's worth having someone in your corner to save you time and money who can negotiate fully on your behalf.

I look forward to hearing from you.

Alessandra Burenin
Coldwell Banker
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jul 9, 2009
the $7500 loan morphed into $8000 for first time home buyers -- it will be forgiven if you stay in the property for 3 yrs. -- there are some income constraints so you might wanna bump me back for complete details -- i've got a synopsis i can send 'ya
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Feb 18, 2009
Hey JJ, if you'd like to see what the approximate closing costs might me on your first home, let me know & I'll set you up with one of our closers. You can email me at Taresa.Hale@alamotitle.com. Also, you can go to our website & find good resources that may be of interest to you. Good Luck & have fun, that first home is an exciting adventure!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Feb 12, 2009
Thankyou for your question. It is a little difficult to give you a definite answer since I don't know what your short and long term goals are, where do you want to live(in town or out), etc. There are several plans that may fit your income, down-payment, and credit score. I just need more information
Web Reference: http://www.timhunke.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Feb 3, 2009
Hi There JJ,

As stated below, there is the $7500 tax credit (it is a loan), probably not all that attractive, you make to much $ (good for you) for alot of programs. Check out TDHCA and MCC, there are programs that might help with the cost of the home, amortized over the year and lifetime of the loan.

The 1st step you really need to accomplish is hire a GOOD REALTOR, stress good, and develop a plan to acheive your goals.........plans, programs and opportunities change on a daily basis. You need a REALTOR in your corner working for you. Preferrably one with a good relationship with a Mortgage Loan Officer.

Good luck in your endeavors.

Jay Warren
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Jan 30, 2009
just a tweak -- there's lots of talk about this tax credit issue -- it expires the end of june 2009 -- you'd have thought the "best answer" might have picked that up -- everybody's got their favorite lender but they all operate under the same set of rules that literally change every day -- i'd say it might be smart to make a move now and perhaps allow a seller to "leaseback" till you're ready to move in
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Jan 30, 2009
Congrats on looking to buy your first home. There are a few programs out there such as the Federal Housing Tax credit http://www.federalhousingtaxcredit.com/ This helps any buyer get into a home. I guess the only problem would be is that you have to purchase the home before July 2009.

You could contact my lender and see what programs she has. Her name is Ashleigh N. Fletcher here is a link to her info. http://www.centraltexashomerebates.com/html/get_a_loan.html.

I have a great program for all buyers in Central Texas. I give them up to half my commission back at closing.
E-mail me for more info.
Good luck,
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jan 29, 2009

You and your spouse definitely need to sit down with a Lender! It's so important to really know what you can afford and what loans best suit YOU. With that information in hand, then you can work with a Realtor in finding that home! Now is a good time to drive around neighborhoods in the areas you want to live in. Your Realtor can provide information on the current listing, then you can sit down in the comfort of your home and go through them, making the decision which ones you'd like to look at.

Sites such as Trulia already give you that ability, but the Realtor can see much more via MLS.

Obviously I have a Lender I consistanly work with that I can recommend, but based off your question, you are not quite ready to proceed. Now's a great time to do your internet research on both Lender's and Realtor's and find a good match for you.

If you have any other questions, please don't hesitate to send me an email or visit our website.

Thank you!
Stacey Hurley-Rider, Realtor
WCAOR 2008 Rookie of the Year
Mitzkat & Associates
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jan 28, 2009
Although you may not qualify for lower income programs, there are programs with zero down and zero closing out there to be had so you could possibly save your $30,000. Additionally, if your financial situation is what you say it is, you'll be in a position to make concessions to anyone you consider to buy a home from whether it be a builder or resale.

I would suggest that you thoroughly interview the real estate agent you consider for in depth information on programs that you may qualify for.

Also consider using an exclusive buyers agent. Check out my website to find out what an exclusive buyers agent is and the advantages of using one in the purchase of your first home.

If you need a real estae agent to talk to, please feel free to contact me at 512 944-8764
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jan 28, 2009
GREAT QUESTION: I am a Texas mortgage loan officer happy to assist you. However lending changes daily, weekly, monthly with new programs and eliminating programs which no longer work. Closer to time of purchase approx. 60 days you need be approved BASED on that time "later this year" Pre approval statements are valid approx. 60 days prior to close date. The lender statement assists realtor submit an offer on your behalf.

Lenders do require at this minimum of 3.5% or more as a downpayment "as of today's lending requirements".

Lynn A. Crosby ~ National Featured Realtor
"...Specializing in Residential, Commercial Properties and Loans..."
Dallas Realtor -
The Michael Group "Dallas Business Journal 08' list top realtors"
Dallas Loan Officer - Homewise Lending
Dallas Real Estate Office: (972) 699-9111
Dallas Real Estate Website: http://www.lynn911.com 60,000 listings Dallas homes for sale
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jan 28, 2009
Hi J.J.

Please check out http://www.hsmtex.com. One of the Lenders I work with is Rachael Haynes of Home Source Mortgage.

Another is George Lourigan at http://www.georgetown.extracomtg.com.

Please let me know how I can assist you.

Connie Herron, REALTOR, ABR, GRI
Keller Williams Realty
Web Reference: http://www.ConnieHerron.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jan 28, 2009
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