Take a Look at What's Inside
How Can I Determine My Housing Needs Before I Begin The Search?
How Do I Know If I'm Ready To Buy A Home?
How Do I Begin The Process Of Buying A Home?
How Do Lenders Decide The Maximum Loan Amount That Buyers Can Afford?
How Does Purchasing A Home Compare With Renting?
Do I Need A Lawyer To Buy A Home?
Why Use A REALTOR?

 
How Can I Determine My Housing Needs Before I Begin The Search? 

Like the video shows, your home should fit the way you live, with spaces and features that appeal to the whole family. Before you begin looking at homes make a list of your priorities - things like location and size. Should the house be close to certain schools? your job? to public transportation? How large should the house be? What type of lot do you prefer? What kinds of amenities are you looking for? Establish a set of minimum requirements and a "wish list." Minimum requirements are things that a house must have for you to consider it while a "wish list" covers things that you'd like to have but that aren't essential.

 

How Do I Know If I'm Ready To Buy A Home?

As you'll see in this video, you can find out by asking yourself some questions: Do I have a steady source of income (usually a job)? Have I been employed on a regular basis for the last 2-3 years? Is my current income reliable? Do I have a good record of paying my bills? Do I have few outstanding long-term debts, like car payments? Do I have money saved for a down payment? Do I have the ability to pay a mortgage every month, plus additional costs? If you can answer "yes" to these questions, you are probably ready to buy your own home.

 

How Do I Begin The Process Of Buying A Home?

Remember these pointers from the video: start by thinking about your situation. Are you ready to buy a home? How much can you afford in a monthly mortgage payment? How much space do you need? What areas of town do you like? After you answer these questions, make a "To Do" list and start doing casual research. Talk to friends and family, drive through neighborhoods, and look in the "Homes" section of the newspaper.

 

How Do Lenders Decide The Maximum Loan Amount That Buyers Can Afford?

As you'll see in the video, the lenders consider your debt-to-income ratio, which is a comparison of your gross (pre-tax) income to housing and non-housing expenses. Non-housing expenses include such long-term debts as car or student loan payments, alimony, or child support. According to the FHA,monthly mortgage payments should be no more than 29% of gross income, while the mortgage payment, combined with non-housing expenses, should total no more than 41% of income. Lenders also consider cash available for down payment and closing costs credit history and the rest of your financial picture when determining your maximum loan amount.

 

How Does Purchasing A Home Compare With Renting?

Like the guy in the video says, the two don't really compare at all. The one advantage of renting is being generally free of most maintenance responsibilities. But by renting, you lose the chance to build equity take advantage of tax benefits and protect yourself against rent increases. Also, you may be at the mercy of the landlord for housing. Owning a home has many benefits. When you make a mortgage payment, you are building equity increasing YOUR net worth. Owning a home also qualifies you for tax breaks that assist you in dealing with your new financial responsibilities like insurance, real estate taxes, and upkeep which can be substantial. But given the freedom, stability, and security of owning your own home they are worth it.

 

Do I Need A Lawyer To Buy A Home?

As we show you in this video, laws vary by state. Some states require a lawyer to assist in several aspects of the home buying process while other states do not as long as a qualified real estate professional is involved. Even if your state doesn't require one you may want to hire a lawyer to help with the complex paperwork and legal contracts. A lawyer can review contracts make you aware of special considerations and assist you with the closing process. Your real estate agent may be able to recommend a lawyer. If not, shop around.

 

Why Use A REALTOR?

A state license is required to sell real estate. But roughly half of those licensed take the additional step of becoming a REALTOR. As we show you in this video, only members of the National Association of Realtors - NAR - are entitled to use that registered trademark and call themselves a REALTOR. As members, they adhere to a strict Code of Ethics and have access to classes, seminars and certification. Their aim is to be experts in their community aware of real estate trends and local and neighborhood issues. They apply that expertise to help buyers and sellers succeed. You can find a certified REALTOR by looking in local sources asking around or searching here.

 

These videos are for informational purposes only when thinking about buying or selling a house. These are not intended to supersede any information or transaction that you may be involved in with a Broker, Lender or other Real Estate Professional.