We’re in the new year now and Its time to start the process of buying a home. All those sweaters and ties from Aunt Bessie were just great but now its time for a gift to yourself. That gift is the American Dream, and it’s a gift that keeps on giving. Every single financial planner you’ll ever talk to, will say that the road to a successful financial future begins with owning your own home.
The beginning of the year is a great time to take some simple steps to prepare yourself for homeownership. The first thing that I recommend everyone do, is, check your credit report. This is very important because frequently a buyer’s credit report will contain erroneous or invalid information that will hurt your chances of getting the loan you deserve. If you haven’t already done so, visit the http://www.annualcreditreport.com website and order your free credit report. You’ll have to be careful and navigate only to the free areas remember that the credit bureaus are in the business to make money which is good, and they have every entitlement to. But, according a Federal Law passed in 2004 ALL CONSUMERS ARE ENTITLED TO ONE FREE ANNUAL CREDIT REPORT.
Each of the three credit bureaus are required to provide this annual report upon your request. So be sure to get all three reports. (an error might appear on all three or just one)
If you don’t have internet access (if so, please e-mail me and tell me how you’re reading this) you can call 1-877-322-8228 and request your free credit report over the phone. The call is a free, but making it may save you thousands of dollars.
The next thing is to is figure out how to stretch your buying power. Here are some tips:
- Pay off long-term debt by using some of your available cash and making a lower down payment.
- If you have overlooked any income, be sure to tell your loan officer. Frequently overlooked income includes, alimony, child support, bonuses, future raises and more.
- Make a higher down payment or find a co-mortgagor who is will to go on the loan with you to help you qualify for a better loan.
- Consider loans and finance options that may help stretch your dollar. Some possibilities are FHA financing, adjustable rate mortgages, interest only financing, balloon financing, or graduated payments. Your lender will fully explain these options to you so you’ll be able to make good decisions.
- Repair your credit file if you find errors in the report you obtained earlier.
- Ask the seller to carry back financing.
- Get a gift from a family member.
- Ask the seller to contribute toward closing costs.
There are many other simple steps you can take to get yourself on the way to homeownership. For a complete buyer’s profile, Please feel free to contact us. (562) 449-8421 or e-mail TeamResults@Century21.com