Are your dreaming of becoming a first-time homeowner in 2014? If so follow our 5 easy-to-accomplish steps to help you realize your dream;

1. Improve Your Credit Score

Mortgage approval and rates are directly related to your credit score. Your credit score plays a major role in securing the home of your dreams. At the beginning of the home buying process order your credit report from AnnualCreditReport.com. AnnualCreditReport.com is a free service authorized by federal law. Go over the report, look for errors and dispute those errors. Most importantly pay off old debts. Also avoid big-ticket items like furniture or a new vehicle. Also do not apply for new credit. A credit inquiry itself causes a credit score to temporarily drop. Acquiring more debt by opening a new credit card can have a dramatic of effect on your credit score and mortgage approval.

 

2. Save Up For Your Down Payment

You will typically need a 20 to 30 percent down payment to qualify for best mortgage rates. Before looking to purchase your dream home look at cutting an unnecessary expenses to save more for your down payment. Every little bit you save helps you avoid higher interest rates or having to purchase private mortgage insurance.

 

3. Shop for your Real Estate Agent

Finding the right real estate agent for you and your needs will take time but will definitely pay off in the end. To begin your search ask family and friends for referrals. Look for a buyer’s agent who can give you a few recent testimonials from satisfied clients. Make sure you check those references to make sure they are legitimate.

 

4. Seek Pre-Approval

Do your homework to understand what you can afford, what you qualify for, and what type of loan will work best for your situation. To begin research the differences between conventional and unconventional loans. A helpful tool is mortgage term comparison calculator to get an idea of costs.

 

5. Find your Dream Home

Home buyers should be researching as much as they can as soon as they begin the process. Don’t wait until you are ready to begin the process to start looking at homes. Begin the process early by researching neighborhoods in your target area and viewing homes online to get an idea of pricing. Once you’re ready to begin looking, you’ll have a much better idea of what you want and what you will be able to afford.

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