Everything about buying a home is new for a first-time homebuyer—and there is a lot more to it than pointing to a house and saying, “Yes, that’s the one!” As a first-time homebuyer, you should know:
- Your credit score.
- How much you can afford based on your income and monthly budget.
- What your total monthly housing costs will be, including utilities and expenses.
- How much you should expect to pay for closing costs.
- The home location and neighborhood.
- The type of home you picture yourself in.
- The preferred school district, if applicable.
- The commute time from the home location to your work.
- The level of home maintenance you’re comfortable with.
- Your short- and long-term household needs.
Programs you can take advantage of
There are programs and loan options that benefit first-time homebuyers, such as FHA Loans, which are insured by the Federal Government and usually are not as strict on loan qualifications and can require a lower down payment than some traditional mortgage loans.
Mission Fed offers First-Time Homebuyer Seminars where a Mission Fed mortgage professional discusses the benefits and responsibilities of homeownership, the application process and much more. First-Time Homebuyer Seminars are available throughout the year.
Knowledgeable Mission Fed staff can be reached Monday-Saturday at your local branch or by calling 800.500.6328 and asking to speak with a mortgage loan specialist.
Mistakes to avoid
As a first-time homebuyer, you probably have many questions. Asking a mortgage professional is always a good idea, and it might also be helpful to ask your trusted friends and family who have experience buying a home about their recommendations, too. Here are some common mistakes to steer clear of:
- Underestimating costs: Your mortgage payment isn’t the only cost associated with a new home—there are property taxes, insurance, repair and maintenance expenses, and Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI) if you put less than 20% down.
- Looking for a home before getting preapproved for a loan: Getting preapproved first and shopping later lets you know what you can afford, so you can shop accordingly.
- Depleting savings for the down payment to avoid mortgage insurance: Paying mortgage insurance isn’t necessarily something to avoid at all costs. Sometimes it is better to pay mortgage insurance and keep some money available for emergencies. This depends on your situation.
Your success is our bottom line and that includes helping you find your first home and getting your first San Diego Home Loan. Visit a branch, call our Contact Center at 800.500.6328 or, if you’re ready, apply for a Home Loan online. We’ll be here to help you each step of the way.
The content provided in this blog consists of the opinions and ideas of the author alone and should be used for informational purposes only. Mission Federal Credit Union disclaims any liability for decisions you make based on the information provided. References to any specific commercial products, processes, or services, or the use of any trade, firm, or corporation name in this article by Mission Federal Credit Union is for the information and convenience of its readers and does not constitute endorsement, control or warranty by Mission Federal Credit Union.