Retirement Isn't So Far Off: How To Secure Your Future

4 Tips For First Time Homeowners Looking For A Home Loan

When a couple gets to the point where they can buy their first home, it marks a special time in their life. However, homeownership isn't as easy as some people may think. In order to buy a house, most households need a home loan. Many first-time homeowners don't fully understand the requirements of getting a home loan. To ensure that you make a good financial decision during your first home purchase, consider these 4 tips for first-time homeowners looking for a home loan. 

1. Improve Your Credit 

Your credit score reflects your likelihood of keeping up with your financial responsibilities, such as a mortgage. Homeowners with good credit will get better interest rates than homeowners with poor credit. A high-interest rate can severely increase the total amount you pay on a home, so you should work on your credit before you apply for a loan. 

To increase your credit score:

  • pay all credit bills on time
  • don't use all of your available credit 
  • clear up delinquent accounts
  • look into credit improvement programs

2. Save For a Down Payment 

When you pay a large down payment when you get your home loan, you will pay less in the long run, because there will be less of a balance accumulating interest. You also won't have to pay for private mortgage insurance (PMI). PMI applies to lenders who pay a down payment of less than 20% of the total of the house. Homeowners may still be able to get a low down payment home loan, but they should expect to pay PMI insurance on top of their mortgage. 

3. Pick a Home Within Your Budget 

Homeowners often struggle to balance their budget with their taste when looking at homes, causing them to buy a home out of their budget. While the house may have more of the desired features, it may not be the best decision financially. Set your budget, and stick to your budget. It can prevent late fees and foreclosure down the road. You can upgrade to your dream home once your finances allow for it.

4. Retain Some Savings 

You will spend the majority of your savings when you buy a new home. However, you don't want to spend all of your savings. You will still need money to furnish the home. You may also need savings in the case of an emergency.   

When you are ready to buy a home, get the finances right so that you can move on to the more exciting parts of the process.  

For more information, contact a local financial institution like Bellco Credit Union.