The smell of spring is in the air. Flowers are starting to bloom, carrying the fresh scent of lilac and honeysuckle through the breeze and into the open windows of homeowners everywhere; the temperature is gradually rising, tempting people out of their homes to spend more time outside.
This time of year inspires many homeowners to declutter their homes and take on the task of deep cleaning every room in their house. But spring cleaning is not just a time for people to reorganize their lives; spring is also an ideal time of year for potential homebuyers to move into their new homes.
If you are considering buying a home, approach organizing all of the tasks you will need to complete and all of the information you will to obtain with the spring cleaning mentality. Here is a guide to what the homebuying process looks like so you can better prepare:
Put as much as you can towards your down payment.
Every situation is different, but a good rule of thumb is to try to save as much as 20 percent of what the total cost of your home would be. If you are buying a home that falls around what the average total cost of a house is in the United States, you are at least looking to pay around $45,000 to cover the cost of the down payment alone.
Be aware of your credit score in advance.
In order to determine your eligibility of obtaining a mortgage and discovering what your interest rate would be, you need to provide your credit score. Today, in order to be considered for a mortgage, you will need to have a credit score of at least 620; if you would like the lowest interest rates available, you will need to have a credit score of 780. It is good practice to check your credit score a year in advance – or at least 6 months in advance – before you go to apply for a mortgage. That way, you have some time to work towards increasing your credit score. A better interest rate could end up saving you thousands of dollars once everything is all said and done.
Start the search for your next dream home.
It is always wise to work with a real estate professional when purchasing a home, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t do a little outside research of your own in order to find your dream location and space. Apps like Zillow allow you to have more control in the homebuying process. You have the capability to customize your search options to preview a variety of homes in an area of your choosing in order to find spaces that are not only designed to your standards, but that are also within your budgetary restrictions as well.