February is the month of love. All around you stores are decorated with hearts and flowers with assorted gifts to give your loved ones. However, Cupid may have struck you or you and your Valentine in a unique way this year.
He might have struck you when you were looking at a house for sale in the neighborhood two blocks away or while searching around on Zillow.
Whether you have a new addition to your family or your current home has been feeling just like a house, let February be the month that inspires you to fall in love with a new home again this coming spring.
No matter if it is a house you saw while browsing sites such as Trulia or if you happened to drive by a “for sale” sign, there are a few steps you can take to make sure you secure the house you love.
Make sure you have a healthy credit score.
In order to qualify for a mortgage, you have to have a certain credit score.
The first step to knowing if you have a high enough credit score is to check! Even if your score is lower than the above requirements, there are some steps you can take to raise it. Click here to read our blog on how to raise your credit score. If you have any questions regarding your score and what type of loan you qualify for, send us a message on Facebook.
Find out if the house fits your budget.
The first step to figuring out whether or not a new home can be a reality for you or for you and your spouse is creating a budget. If you already have a budget, adjust it to see if you can afford making mortgage payments.
To figure out what your mortgage payment would be on the home you fell in love with, click here to download our mortgage calculator.
Get preapproved for a mortgage.
If you have already begun the process of buying a new home, chances are in your research you may have come across the terms prequalified and preapproved. While initially they both may sound like the same things, they are slightly different.
A mortgage prequalification is when you have submitted some basic information to the lender and they will give you a rough estimate on what you can afford. One step further, that could mean winning the deal on the house, is a mortgage preapproval. In addition to your basic information, a mortgage preapproval gathers some additional financial information, such as your credit report, tax returns and bank statements. When you secure a preapproval letter, the seller knows you are serious and can qualify for a mortgage to buy their home.
Buffington Mortgage Group’s EXPRESSPASS program is a quick and easy way you can get preapproved online. To fill out the EXPRESSPASS form, click here.
Tour the home and fill out a house hunting checklist.
In order to truly fall in love with a new home, you need to tour the inside of it! Once you found a house that has piqued your interest, contact the seller or your realtor to set up a tour of the inside. While you are touring the inside it may help to have a checklist, such as this one, to figure out any damages you may have to fix before or after closing.
Thanks to the advances of technology, you can also do an initial tour of a home online. To tour some houses in the Central Texas area online or on your phone, check out our Beautiful Texas Homes Facebook group.
Find the right real estate agent.
In Austin, Texas alone there are thousands upon thousands of real estate agents. With agents pitching potential clients by phone, email, postcards and more, it can seem impossible to know who the right one is for you and your needs. Some tips on picking the right agent include:
- Reading Yelp reviews from previous clients
- Researching their credentials and looking to see if they have won any awards
- Looking at their other listings
With over 20 years of experience, the team at Buffington Mortgage has worked with hundreds of real estate agents in our area. We would be happy to also give you some recommendations on agents.
Fall in love with home again by securing a new house for you or you and your family. For more information, follow us on social media or give our office a call at 512-672-4729.