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Are these Home Buying Myths Holding you Back?

So You are Ready to become a First Time Home-Buyer.

Congratulations!  This is a big and exciting step! Not only do you earn the Pride and Joy of owning your very own home, but you also get to start building on your future.  It is your first home, that often gives you the ability and equity to afford to grow in home ownership as your family grows.  But with buying a home, sometimes there are some misconceptions that should be cleared up:

1. The first step is searching for a home.

I know it’s exciting to get out and start the house hunting.  As your Realtor- I love nothing more!  It is fun to get out and see what is available.  It’s fantastic to find that perfect one.  But how frustrating would it be, if you thought you found that “perfect one” for $250,000, but later found out you only qualify for $200,000?  What a disappointing moment.  Because of this- it’s important that your first step in the home buying process is: To speak with a lender.  I can send you an online application that you can complete anytime day or night to get that ball rolling.  You can have your pre-approval letter in hand the very next day- and with that we will be armed to make an offer on the RIGHT home for you!

2. You don’t need a Real Estate Agent.

For starters, it is customary in our area of Alabama- Baldwin County- Both the buyer and seller agent fees are paid by the Seller.  So as the buyer, you are able to utilize the professional services of a real estate agent for free. Having a real estate agent working for you, you will have access to all of the latest real estate listings and newest price reductions as they occur.  The websites online like Zillow and Trulia may seem handy to a buyer, but oftentimes there are many inaccuracies like homes that are no longer on the market, erroneous prices, and sometimes even scam listing.  With a Realtor you will also have protection when it comes to writing and negotiating contracts.   There is no reason for a buyer NOT to use an Agent- For FREE!

3. If you have Bad Credit, you may as well forget it.

If you have a credit score anywhere from the low 500’s there is a chance home ownership may not be too far off for you.   I can help you connect with the right lender who may be able to get you approved. If an approval isn’t immediate for you, my lender can give you pointers and a roadmap after reviewing your credit, to allow for some quick credit fixes that can often raise your score within 60-90 days.  It is always in your best interest and will save your pocketbook some extra interest the higher your credit score is.

4. Be prepared to put at least 10{21fd5c4e01e29521095b8da75d82adfac7b7b997f9f72aa45032cd25125086c0} down.

Think you have to sell an arm and a leg to buy a home? Not at all! An FHA loan only requires 3.5{21fd5c4e01e29521095b8da75d82adfac7b7b997f9f72aa45032cd25125086c0} while a conventional historically only requires 5{21fd5c4e01e29521095b8da75d82adfac7b7b997f9f72aa45032cd25125086c0}, my lender JUST gave me some info on a new conventional loan he has available to buyers with good credit, for only 1{21fd5c4e01e29521095b8da75d82adfac7b7b997f9f72aa45032cd25125086c0} down!!  There are also programs that can potentially help you with down payment assistance, allowing low to No money down. USDA and VA loans are the most popular 0{21fd5c4e01e29521095b8da75d82adfac7b7b997f9f72aa45032cd25125086c0} down programs. If you qualify, this can take a big chunk off the amount of cash you have to bring to the closing table.

5. You only need enough money for a down payment at closing.

This is one of the biggest misconceptions. There is a lot of cost that goes into buying a home, and that includes upfront costs. One of the mandatory costs are a termite and appraisal. If you are getting a mortgage, the home will have to appraise as well as require a  letter stating there are no termites in the home. A termite letter can run around $200 in our area. An appraisal can range from $500-$700 dollars. Aside from your down payment, you then have to pay for closing costs. These are the costs incurred by the title and mortgage companies for doing the prep work involved in getting you to the closing table.  Closing costs can range anywhere between 3-6{21fd5c4e01e29521095b8da75d82adfac7b7b997f9f72aa45032cd25125086c0} of the purchase price.

Often times some of these costs  can be negotiated in the purchase contract.  You may be able to get the seller to agree to cover some of these costs if you bring a good enough offer to the table.  This can be discussed with your agent on a case by case agent and decided at the time of the offer it is wise or not.

One of my favorite things to do as a Realtor is to work with first time home buyers.  I once was a single Mom, and had a great agent work really hard to help me get in my first home.  I would love to be able to be that person for you.  If you are searching for your first home anywhere in Baldwin County Alabama, please give me a call, text or email today! 251-609-4434