Every homebuyer wants a low mortgage par rate because it can save them hundreds of…
In a rapidly changing housing market, buying a home can be a confusing process. But with the right team and plan in place, you will be better equipped to navigate through the challenges. Whether you’re looking for an investment property or a place to start a family, we’ll tell you how to find a mortgage that saves you money and meets your needs over the coming years.
Find the right mortgage with these three steps.
Define Your Homeowning Goals
Where you want to live and how long you plan to stay will determine which loan is best for you. Do you prefer quiet suburbs or a busy city? Are you looking for an investment property or planning to start a family? When you figure out what you’re looking for, check out home prices in that area. Find out what houses are selling for and what you can afford.
Set a Budget
First, you’ll need money for a down payment and closing costs. Then, you’ll need enough for monthly payments (including property taxes, homeowners insurance, and mortgage insurance), utility bills, and other expenses. Some neighborhoods and condos also have monthly fees for a homeowner association (HOA).
Ask if you’re eligible for special loans that help first-time homebuyers or people with limited incomes. Loans with low-interest rates, for example, may be available for professions like teaching or law enforcement. You can use an online mortgage calculator to find out how much your monthly payments will be on a loan over 15 or 30 years. If you can afford a shorter loan, you’ll save money on interest.
Get pre-qualified for a loan by submitting your financial information to a mortgage lender. The lender will verify your credit history to make sure you can afford your monthly payments. The better your credit rating, the more likely you are to qualify for a lower interest rate.
Loans may be conventional or government-insured. The three most common are the fixed-rate mortgage, the adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM), and the Federal Housing Administration loan (FHA).
- A fixed-rate mortgage is a conventional loan that has the same interest rate for the life of the loan.
- An adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) is a conventional loan that stays the same for 5, 7, or 10 years and then changes.
- A Federal Housing Administration (FHA) loan has a lower down payment and more flexibility than an ARM or fixed-rate loan. It is insured by the government.
Other loans include VA loans for veterans, USDA loans for buyers in rural areas, jumbo loans for big mortgages, and reverse mortgages for homeowners over 62.