The Loan Process
The home loan process can be broken down into a few basic steps. Let’s go over what they are and how to ensure you successfully navigate them.
Create A Realistic Budget
Take a hard look at your financial situation and start developing your budget. Consider what other bills you’ll be paying, whether you plan to change careers, and where you can make cuts.
Research home prices in your desired area and what the average mortgage payment is. This will give you a starting place while crafting your budget. If you can’t make it work on paper you need to reevaluate what you want and need in a home.
Find Your Lender
Once you have a budget in mind, search for a reputable lender. Consider factors like the company’s reputation, their areas of expertise, and what kind of services they offer. Take your time to look around and shop for different options. When you’re sure you’ve found a company you like, you can apply for pre-approval.
Pre-approval will give you an idea of what your budget is and what terms you’ll need to agree to. When you receive the go-ahead you can begin your home search.
Search For Your Home
Your lender may be able to help you put together a list of sellers that are open to owner financing. This will cut down on your search time and ensure that the houses you tour are all viable options. Once you choose your house you can begin the negotiation process.
At this point, you’ll want to go ahead and finish the loan approval process. While this is in the works go ahead and do any walk-throughs or inspections that need to be performed.
Ask For An Inspection
You don’t want to move in and then discover you have repairs to make. Having an inspection at the beginning lets you form a realistic picture of what is needed. If there are major issues, you may be able to negotiate a lower buying price. Discuss these decisions with your loan officer for recommendations.
Tie Up Loose Ends
Finish off any necessary approval paperwork for your lender, have the home appraised, and have the mortgage processed. Once everything is in order you can close on your new home and begin the moving in process.
Make Your Payments
Once you’re in your new house all that’s left to do is keep up with your payments. Keep track of when they’re due and what your running balance is.
If your financial situation changes while you’re making payments reach out to your lender. They can help you reevaluate your payment plan as necessary. If you know you’re going to miss a payment reach out ahead of time and let your lender know what’s going on.
They may be able to reduce your payments, stretch them out, offer you a loan, or provide you with other options to keep you on track. Your loan officer can also assist you if you find yourself wanting to pay more than the amount due.