Are you going to be a first time home owner? There are many things you are probably stressed about, and loans are probably a part of that stress. If you are looking for home loan advice, you have come to the right place. Here is our three point checklist for figuring out your home loan finance situation.
1. Know Your Credit
A good credit score is usually considered to be anything above a 720, though every lender will have different standards for judging credit. You can get a credit report from sites like AnnualCreditReport.com. Look for issues in the reports such as unpaid accounts or mistakes. Most lenders will want a score of at least 600 before they finance you. Need to get your score up? Pay off debt, consolidate cards, and in some cases, just waiting will help if you have experienced things like bankruptcy in the past.
2. Home Loan Options
There are several types of loans to choose from for financing your home. Fixed rate mortgages are the most popular, since it shields people from payment surprises and is easy to set up and understand. Since you pay the same amount each month, it can be easier to budget for this loan type. The Federal Housing Administration backs FHA loans, which are fixed loan mortgages. With this loan you get lower down payments because the government backs your lender, but means you will need mortgage insurance. ARM, or adjustable rate mortgages, have interest rates that are periodically adjusted based on your interest rate index.
Avoid Home Loan Fraud
For people new to the home buying process, skimming, skipping or hedging a bit here or there might not seem like a big deal. Mortgage fraud, however, is a real thing, and it can get you in big trouble. Included in fraud is falsifying employment income, having a silent second mortgage, a non owner occupant claiming occupancy, or undisclosed kickbacks, like the home seller giving you money to pay for a new roof. When you are looking for home loan help, be careful about whom you receive it from.
Have home loan advice for us to share? Let us know in the comments!