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What exactly does it take to buy a house? Whether it's your first home or you're making a change, the housing market and the process has changed a bit in the last few years. Buying a home in 2015 looks a little different than it did in 2005, just 10 years ago. What if you're buying your first home in 2015? Is it even more different than it was for first time home buyers 10 years ago? the answer is yes, you'll find a few things different. You'll also find some things have never changed.
It happens a lot. We'll see a contact form from a potential borrower that tells us "ACME Bank gave me mortgage pre-approval. But the house I want needs work and they don't do renovation loans." Don't worry, your home buying process isn't completely off the rails. We can help.
If you’ve started thinking about buying a house, you’ve probably heard the term “credit score.” This number tells a bank how likely it is that you can pay back your loans, and it’s based on things like the amount of debt you have, loans you’ve had in the past, and your repayment history. The higher your score, the more likely it is that a bank will lend you money. You’ve earned your score by taking good care of your finances, so you want to be careful about anything that might take away from it. And one thing that can subtract points from your score is a credit inquiry. “But wait!” you say. “Wasn’t I supposed to get pre-approved for my mortgage before I start looking at houses? And doesn’t a pre-approval count as a credit inquiry?” Good question, but when it comes to pre-approval, your credit score is safe. Here’s why.
The key to a successful house hunting mission is the mortgage pre-approval.
UPDATE: While somethings have changed, much of this information is still relevant to buying your first home in 2015. Check out our more recent blog post about tips and tricks for buying in 2015. Preparing now for your home buying adventure next year will help make the process easier, and will help you buy that house earlier in the year. If you get started with small steps now, you can become a 2013 first time home buyer with no real headaches. The Boy Scouts of America use this for part of their motto, but it works in the home buying world too: Be Prepared.