Buying a home is usually part of the American dream. We fantasize about white picket fences, perfectly landscaped yards, and hosting whimsical parties for our friends and family. We want a place for all of our treasures, and a sanctuary where we feel safe, but how do you know when you’re ready to purchase a home?
Why do You Want To Buy a Home?
First of all, ask yourself why you want to be a homeowner. What is your motivation? Pride of ownership is a real thing, but if your main desire is to look cool on Facebook or impress your friends, that might not be the best reason to buy a home. So, what are the right reasons? Perhaps you’re sick of paying rent, which is essentially paying off someone else’s mortgage, or maybe you’re tired of moving all the time. Only you can decide if your motivation to purchase a home is a valid reason.
What Kind of Home Do You Want?
Buying a home should never be an impulse buy. If you’re pretty sure you want to buy a house, put significant research, and thought into what kind of home will work best for you in the long run. For example, if you are a senior citizen, lots of stairs might not be a good idea. Do you need a garage or a large yard for your dog? Will it be a primary residence, rental property, or vacation home? How many bedrooms do you think you’ll need? Make a list of must-have features for your new home and don’t stray from your list!
Where Do You Want to Purchase?
The next thing to consider is where you want to live. Think about things like the reputation of the school district (if you have kids or plan on having children), available services in the area (such as grocery stores or churches), or accessibility to public transportation (especially if you don’t have a car). You may also want to consider proximity to medical services, and your close friends, or family. Also, how do you feel about the weather in the region or the local crime statistics?
When is the Best Time for You to Buy?
You’ve heard it said many times, “timing is everything.” Buying a home is a major decision and requires a lot of time and effort. You have to look at houses, qualify for a loan, choose an insurance carrier, and real estate broker. These things take a lot of time and effort, so plan accordingly, and don’t start the home buying process unless you are willing to invest your time and energy into the process.
Can You Qualify for a Loan?
Your loan officer can walk you through the requirements for qualifying for a home loan. They might want to see your taxes, check stubs from payroll, steady employment, payment history, and bank statements. They will evaluate your debt to income ratio and decide if you are a good candidate for a loan. Fortunately, getting a prequalification doesn’t usually take more than a few days, especially if you are well prepared with all of your documents ready.
All of these helpful tips will help you know when you’re ready to buy a home. When you’re ready, reach out to an excellent realtor and loan professional to get the process started, and feel free to call us with any questions. We are always here to help.
Note: Opinions expressed are solely my own and do not express the views of my employer