17 May The Quick Guide to Buying a Home
Buying a home can be confusing and overwhelming, but with the right information and help it doesn’t have to be! Community banks like Bank of the Lowcountry are here to help you navigate every twist and turn. Before you fall down the window shopping and real estate rabbit hole, take a moment to read over these important steps and set yourself up for success.
The first action your lender is going to take is pulling your credit. The higher your credit the more borrowing power you have. You can request a copy of your credit report from any of the three major credit bureaus to better understand what is impacting your credit and make plans to better your score like lowering your utilization, making on-time payments, or disputing lines of credit that shouldn’t be there.
Another thing to consider is your debt-to-income ratio. A lender will have to weigh how much debt you currently have versus your income. If it’s too high, that can have a negative impact on your ability to secure a loan. Try paying down as much debt as possible before you kick off the home-buying process. Pay off credit cards and avoid opening new lines of credit like car purchases while actively house hunting.
While building credit and lowering your debt, don’t forget to save for additional costs that come with buying a home. Some costs you’ll feel upfront like closing fees and down payments, but other costs like property tax, insurance, HOA fees, increased utilities, and new furnishings can sneak up on you. Make sure to value any future costs and prioritize how you save for them – you’ll want to cover your taxes and insurance before shopping for that new washer and dryer.
The journey to homeownership is never as simple as 1,2,3 and the closer you get to settling in your dream home, the more questions you’ll have and the more steps you’ll have to take. Starting out on the right foot can only help you farther down the line, and when the time comes our bankers are ready and willing to help in any way that they can!
For more information, contact us at (843) 549-2265 to speak with one of our lenders today.