When dealing with the rush of a busy day, it's nice to have the freedom to access your accounts right from your computer, your phone, or a nearby ATM and it may even save you time and money.
First, you want to have a good handle on your finances so you understand what you can realistically afford. That requires you knowing the ends and outs of your credit report. Order a free copy of your credit report at www.annualcreditreport.com and get to know everything on it and correct any mistakes directly with the credit bureau.
Secondly, develop a realist budget. This will help you determine how much home you can really afford without causing too much financial stress.
The third part of preparation is to get pre-approved for a home loan. While the days of getting a home loan by just telling the financial institution what you earn are behind us -you now have to actually provide a pay stub or tax return as proof - this does not mean that you have to have perfect credit to qualify for a home loan.
For example, to qualify for a “conventional” mortgage you will need a credit score of at least 680 however, to qualify for a loan backed by the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) you can have a score as low as 580.
Now, it’s time to prepare for working with a realtor by detailing your wants and your needs. To find the home that will work for you, make a list and prioritize the most important things you want and need in your new home. Be sure to share this list with your Realtor and be ready to answer the questions your realtor will ask.
Free Home Buying Advice
To learn more about how to buy a home visit the website of The Washington Homeownership Resource Center at www.homeownership-wa.org.There are a lot of free first-time homebuyer seminars and resources that are available for you to get you on the path of homeownership.
Visit www.becu.org/seminars for a list of in-person seminars and educational articles.