Planning to Buy a Home? Start Smart!
At First Community Bank, we want to provide you with the best products, services, convenience and banking information. Use these tips, and call or visit us online if we can answer questions. We look forward to serving you.
Spring is the most popular time for turning home plans into reality. If you’re ready to buy a home, you can make your experience less stressful by understanding the process.
Pre-Qualification is the first step. You supply a bank or lender with your overall financial picture, including debt, income and assets. Then a lender can give you a general idea of the mortgage amount you could obtain. Benefit: you can focus on looking at homes that are within your price range. Loan pre-qualification is not an in-depth look at your ability to purchase a home, but it allows you to discuss your situation with your lender and start to understand your mortgage options.
Consider using a licensed real estate agent to represent you. They have a wealth of resources that can quickly identify properties within your criteria, assist you with vendors (home inspection, remodeling contractors, appraisal, etc.) and can professionally represent your interest in the sale contract negotiation.
Pre-Approval can help you get the home you want. You'll complete an official mortgage application (and usually pay an application fee), then supply the lender with the necessary documentation to perform an extensive check on your financial background and current credit rating. (Check your credit rating, dispute any errors, pay down outstanding debt and do not open additional credit accounts.) With pre-approval, you will receive a conditional commitment in writing for an exact loan amount. Benefit: a letter of pre-approval lets a potential seller know you are serious and are closer to having financing arranged, as opposed to other buyers who have not taken this step.
Required documentation will vary from lender to lender. The most common items include the Social Security number for anyone who will be on the loan; proof of employment for at least the last two years; proof of income; tax documents such as W-2 statements and recent tax returns; verification of current and recent residency; bank account records; credit information.