Here are some interesting stats on first-time buyers (courtesy of CAR.org)! Considering I’m roughly in the median age, it feels like I’m a little on the slow end of the spectrum, but perhaps I’m not alone? Anyone wanna back me up?
It probably has a lot to do with fear. Fear of the unknown. Fear of not being able to afford it. Fear of taking on a huge responsibility.
So in order to get past the fear, it’s probably time I listen to my own words, hunker down, and educate myself with what it’s going to take to buy a home.
Here are some tips for preparing to be a first-time home buyer:
- Consider your debt-to-income ratio…aka if you have too much debt, it could affect how much of a loan you can qualify for.
- Same goes for your credit score. The higher the credit score, the higher the chances a better interest rate.
- It doesn’t hurt to be “gifted” a down payment! If your parents are wanting to help you out with your initial costs/down payment, then by all means, welcome their help. Down payments are probably my biggest fear, and I’d personally want to put as much down as possible to lower my monthly expenses. So if your parents are willing and able to help, take it because it will only help you in the long run.
- Only buy if you’re comfortable with it. That means a little stability. Consistency with income. Enough in your emergency savings. Et cetera. Defaulting on your payments is a dangerous path to take, so just make sure your financial comfort zone is comfortable enough for you to take on a new home.
- Talk to a loan officer to see what you qualify for. There’s no bigger buzzkill than looking for homes that are outside of your budget. Get pre-qualified before you hit all those home-searching websites, and you’ll set your expectations at a reasonable level.
So now I’m just going to take my own advice, sit on it, and figure out when I can join the ranks of these first-time home buyers! It sounds like a pretty cool club to be in…to paint your home the color you want, hammer a nail in the wall instead of those sticky plastic wall things you get from Target…you get it!
Be sure to check out current listings in your ideal neighborhood on my MY KW WEBSITE HERE!