It’s common for first-time homebuyers to make mistakes. However, with the real estate market so competitive right now, you can’t afford to learn on the job. If you’re interested in buying a home in the future, you should start preparing today.
Keep your credit score high
Your credit score will be extremely important at all steps in the home buying process. Even if you get preapproved for a mortgage, the mortgage lender could still deny approval before you close on your house. That means that you need to get your credit score up and keep it up.
If you already have great credit, try not to mess it up during the home buying process by opening or closing lines of credit. Making a large purchase on a credit card could also damage your credit score because it will lower your available credit. Until you close on your house, try to keep your credit as stable as possible.
Shop for a mortgage first
First-time homebuyers often think that they should shop for a home before they apply for a mortgage. However, doing business in this order will probably lead to disappointment considering how competitive the real estate market is right now. Not only should you apply for a mortgage ahead of time, but you should also apply for a few different mortgages so that you can compare interest rates and closing costs.
Maintain steady employment
Changing jobs during the home buying process can complicate things since most mortgage lenders want to see at least two years of steady employment history. Even if changing jobs ultimately benefits you, it could result in a gap in your income history. If you’re involved in this type of a real estate transaction, it’s best to wait until the deal is closed before changing jobs.
Consider hiring a real estate agent
Many first-time homebuyers make the mistake of thinking that they can do everything themselves. However, not hiring a real estate agent could end up costing you. A real estate agent may help you to get the best deal on a house by negotiating on your behalf.