Buying your first home is a big financial and emotional decision. If you are looking to buy your first home, make sure you do your homework. Here are some tips to get you started:
- Go to your local bank or their website (or to Biddeford Savings if you don’t have a local bank) to determine how much money you can afford to spend on a house. Using information such as your income, debts, assets and credit history, a Loan Officer can assist you in doing the calculations or there are also calculators on bank websites that will help.
- Determine what type of mortgage you wish to apply for – fixed-rate or adjustable rate, 30 years or 15 years. How much money you have been able to save for the down-payment will help determine what type of loan will fit your situation the best. There are many different programs out there – I recommend speaking to a Loan Officer in person to ensure you end up with the right mortgage for your situation.
- Decide which communities you would consider living in. To help in this process talk with friends, do research online, even drive around to get the feel of the different communities. Consider things like commuting time to work, school quality, taxes, recreational opportunities, and distance to friends and family.
- Make a wish list of the characteristics you desire in your first house. Things like lot size, design style, number of bedrooms, number of bathrooms, garage space, surroundings. This information will be helpful when you meet with a Realtor to begin looking at houses. In fact, you can now research houses online so start looking from home – that will also help you develop your wish list.
My next post will give you some tips on the rest of the process.