Plano Home Real Estate MortgageWhether you’re just out of college, recently married or simply haven’t jumped into the market yet, buying your first DFW home is an exciting prospect. It can also be an expensive one, which is why most people will take out a mortgage to help finance the cost.

If you are planning on engaging with a mortgage lender, you’ll need to have your finances in order. In today’s post, we’ll share a few key reasons why you’ll want to check your credit score well in advance of buying your first home.

Your Credit Score Is A Signal For Lenders

As you know, mortgage lenders have a responsibility to lend to those individuals and families who are at a low risk of default. So when a mortgage lender starts to dig into your financial background, they are looking at your credit history and credit score to help them assess that risk.

Note that having a low score doesn’t necessarily mean you have bad credit. If you’re still in your 20s and have only had a credit card, your score might be low even though you are fully capable of managing a mortgage.Plano Home Loan

Your Score Impacts Your Mortgage Interest Rate

As mentioned above, your credit score helps to signify your risk. If your credit score is in a lower range, perhaps a 640 or 660, you’re presenting a greater risk than someone with a score of 760 or 800. Because of this, the interest rate that you pay on your mortgage will in part be determined by your credit score. Those individuals who present a higher risk pay a higher rate to compensate. And vice versa, if your credit is spotless you can expect to pay a lower interest rate.

You’ll Need Time To Challenge Any Issues

Finally, you’ll need to give yourself some lead time to challenge any irregularities with your credit report. The credit reporting agencies aren’t perfect and they do make mistakes. There may be some old, retired credit card or other debt sitting on your report which is holding the score down. Even worse, there may be some incorrect delinquency or other error which ends up as a big red flag for potential mortgage lenders.

Plano mortgage ratesAs you can see, it’s worth spending the time to check your credit score. You get to check it for free once per year, so take advantage of the opportunity. And when you’re ready to discuss buying your first home, contact Warren Whitaker by phone or text at 972.523.8353 or Warren@Lendhome.com. He will share how to navigate the credit score and mortgage process so you can land the home of your dreams.

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Plano home loansThere is so much to know when it comes to Plano home ownership that even wading into all of the information can seem overwhelming, but if there’s one thing you need when the time comes to purchasing a home, it’s to be prepared. Here are a few ways that you can ensure you’re ready for what a mortgage entails so that buying your dream home will be a positive experience you won’t regret.

Consider All Of Your Options

Instead of accepting the mortgage that your bank is offering you, it’s very important to do some research and determine what some of the best options out there are for you. While it’s entirely possible that the option pushed forward by your bank will work out, in the days of so much information online it’s silly to go into your biggest purchase blindfolded. Take some time out and read about the products available so that, when the time comes, you can make an educated decision.

Know Your Credit Historyplano home loans

Lenders will most definitely be digging through your finances and credit history for anything that might make them leery of your financial state, but you’ll want to be aware of your own standing so that you can be prepared for what this might entail. By getting your credit report and score before going through the process of acquiring a mortgage, you can fix any errors that might be on your credit report so that you’ll be prepared for the result when the time comes for pre-approval.

Plano Home LoansPlan For The Future Possibilities

If the mortgage amount you are planning on paying seems feasible on a month-to-month basis, it’s certainly a good place to start, but with the ever-fluctuating state of interest rates, you’ll need to prepare for this reality at the same time. It’s important to base the amount you’ll be spending each month off of the income and expenditures that you’ve worked out in a budget, but you’ll want to add in some wiggle room so that a jump in the rates won’t sink your dream of home ownership.

There are many things to be aware of when starting the process of purchasing a home, but delving into your credit history and doing the necessary background research can make for a smoother experience. If you’re looking for advice on purchasing a home,contact Warren Whitaker at 972.523.8353 or Warren@Lendhome.comyour local mortgage professional for more information.

Plano real estatePurchasing a home is often considered an important step in one’s financial life, no matter what point you arrive at it, but there are things you should know about financing your home purchase before stepping into the fray. If you’re planning on buying a home soon and want to avoid some major missteps, here are a few tips that will set you up for success.

Taking The Lender You’re Offered

In the event that you’ve been pre-qualified for a certain amount, you’ll want to find a lender that will make the process towards a home purchase a little bit smoother. Instead of going with the first option that’s offered, do some research and come up with a shortlist of potential lenders that have good reviews and have been around the industry for a significant amount of time. The process will be a lot more comfortable if there’s someone on your side you know you can trust.

Keeping Your Credit History In The Darkplano home loans

Without a doubt, the lender will be looking at your financial history in order to determine the amount of financing you will receive, but it’s still important to be prepared on your end so that you know what to expect. Start by acquiring your credit report so that you can correct any inaccuracies on it and be prepared for what this score will say about your financial viability. When it comes to the financing you’ll need down the road, the right information on your credit report will make a difference in the end result.

Plano home real estateForgetting About The Loan Officer

If you’ve already established who your lender will be, it’s still important to meet with the person who will be handling your loan and make sure they’re someone you can trust. Ensure that you are aware of their qualifications and that they have enough previous experience in their back pocket to provide you with insights that may come in handy. While having a reliable lender is certainly a good start, the right individual to handle your loan will be someone who is licensed and involved with a local, professional mortgage association.

All of the things involved with mortgage financing can be quite complicated, but by finding the right lender and preparing yourself for the tough financial questions, it can be a much easier experience. If you’re starting to consider your options for a home purchase, you may want to contact Warren Whitaker at 972.523.8353 or Warren@Lendhome.com, one of our local mortgage professionals for more information.

Down paymentWhether or not you’re new to Plano real estate, there’s little doubt that you’ve heard the term down payment as it relates to purchasing a home. There’s a lot of different information out there in regards to how much this figure should be and it can be hard to determine exactly what the importance of this payment is. If you’re trying to determine the ideal amount to put down, here are some things to consider.

Explaining Down Payments And Why They’re Important

The down payment is probably one of the largest single payments you’ll make for anything, and this is why so many people save for years. When you buy a home, the down payment is the amount of money that goes into the initial home investment, and this is taken off of the cost of the house. In essence, while this money qualifies as an asset, it is tied up in paying off the total cost of your home.

The Differing Amounts For Down PaymentsDown payment

It’s often the case that many figures are thrown around in regards to the ideal down payment percentage, and they generally vary from 3-20% of the home’s cost. If you are paying a percentage on the low side of the scale, this can unfortunately mean that you will have fewer mortgage options and will be stuck with an increased interest rate. The amount you should pay depends on your financial health and purchasing commitment, but the larger the down payment is, the more minimal your monthly payments will be.

Down PaymentDeciding The Perfect Percentage

Saving up 20% of a home’s total price may seem like a lot of time and effort, but this can be the ideal amount to put down. In addition to lowered monthly payments and a better interest rate, you’ll also be able to avoid Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI), which is required if you put down less than 20%. There is no right answer to the question of how much to put towards a down payment, but you may end up spending less in the long run if you can invest more in the beginning.

There are many figures thrown around when it comes to real estate, but the amount of a down payment should be economically feasible for you and enable you to make your monthly payments consistently. If you’re planning on purchasing soon and are looking for home options, you may want to contact Warren Whitaker at 972.523.8353 or Warren@LendHome.com, your trusted mortgage professional for more information.

Plano Loan ApprovalIf you’re about to seek approval for a Plano Home Loan, you’ll want to ensure you have a solid credit score and clean financial records to boost your likelihood of being approved. There are certain characteristics that lenders want to see in a mortgage applicant before they approve a loan, and you want to prove that you’re a responsible borrower. But certain behaviors can easily tank your application and crush your home ownership dreams.

Before you seek approval, make sure your finances are in order. Avoid these three mortgage-killing habits while your lender evaluates your loan and you’ll quickly find yourself holding the keys to your new home.

Using Up Most Of Your Available Credit

It can be tempting to start buying furniture when your mortgage is about to be approved, but you’re better off waiting on the shopping trip until after youplano home loans get the green light from your lender. Using a significant amount of your available credit – or applying for new credit – will impact your debt-to-income ratio and change your credit score. You might even end up getting yourself a higher interest rate or reducing your credit score to below the qualifying range – so don’t go credit-crazy until after you’re approved.

Being Late On Your Monthly Bills

Payment history makes up one third of your credit score, so you’ll want to make sure you pay all of your bills on time and in full if you’re looking for a mortgage. A single 30-day late payment on a bill can easily knock 50 to 100 points off your credit score. Even worse, some lenders require a full year of on-time payments before they’ll even consider you for a mortgage.

Plano home loanCo-Signing Someone Else’s Loan

Co-signing on a loan is generally risky under any circumstances, but if you’re trying to get approved for a mortgage, taking on liability for someone else’s debt will change your debt-to-income ratio. Being on the hook for a debt you don’t own makes you look like a risk to lenders – if the primary borrower on the loan you co-signed stops making payments, you’ll need to pay the loan, and that could divert your cash away from your mortgage.

Getting approved for a mortgage is a critical part of the home buying process, but too many would-be homeowners torpedo their own chances of getting a mortgage by making poor decisions. Contact Warren Whitaker at 972.523.8353 or Warren@LendHome.com to learn how you can give yourself the best possible chance of getting approved for a mortgage.

Plano Home LoansTake a look at this short video on what affects your monthly mortgage payment ~ the amount of the down payment the size of the mortgage loan, the interest rate, the length of the repayment term, and payment schedule will all affect the size of your mortgage payment. In bullets:

  • Down payment

  • Loan size

  • Interest rate – fixed or adjustable

  • Repayment term – how long

  • Payment schedule – how often

all affect the size of your payment.

Plano Texas real estateWith all of the care and consideration that can go into deciding if a home is the right fit, it can cause a headache to realize that you may not have a lot of time to put in an offer. It’s certainly important to weigh all of the factors of buying a home before deciding to put yourself in the ring, but here is why you’ll want to come to a conclusion quickly when it comes to a home you love.

It’s An Ideal Home, For You…And Many Others

If you’ve finally found a home that you can see yourself and your family in, and you’re seriously considering putting in an offer, there’s a good chance that there are many other people who might also be quite interested in it. While you’ll need to determine whether it’s the right neighborhood, size and price before putting in an offer, you’ll want to consider these decisions relatively quickly so that someone doesn’t beat you to the punch.Plano Home

A Quick Decision Means You’re Serious

Most home sellers are interested in getting an offer that is quite close to their asking price, but like anyone, they can have intuitions about potential buyers and may be more comfortable with someone who is reliable. By posing an offer to the seller in short order, you will make them aware of your keenness and interest, and – at the end of the day – this may actually inspire more trust in them. If they need to sell the home quickly or are planning a move of their own soon, this can make a considerable difference.

Plano HomesThe Prices Are Always Rising

If you’ve been perusing the market for a while, deciding to make an offer on a home you can really see yourself in may end up being a money saver. According to a recent Dallas Morning News article, North Texas apartment rents are rising at a record pace.  The average rental price in North Texas has risen by 14% since 2011 to $975 per month, and home prices are also beginning to increase. This means that it’s becoming an even better investment to put money into property instead of rent, so that you can make up the difference in your finances in the present and the future.

It’s important to make an educated decision when deciding to purchase a home, but by deciding quickly if a home works for you and making your interest known you may have more success.

Plano home real estateIf you’re in the market for a Plano, Texas home, you’re probably trying to budget for all of the expenses that come with a home purchase. After all, the asking price isn’t necessarily the entire amount that you’ll pay – there are other expenses that will factor in to the final price. One such expense is your closing costs.

Closing costs are the reals estate related transaction fees you’ll pay when you sign the deal to buy your home. But how much do you need to save up for closing costs? Here’s what you need to know.

The General Guideline for What to ExpectPlano home real estate

Most mortgage advisors will tell you that you should expect to pay about 3 to 5 percent of your mortgage in closing costs. By law, your mortgage provider is obligated to give you a Loan Estimate or LE (this replaces the old Good Faith Estimate) of what your closing costs and total cash for closing will be. Some lenders, prior to October 3rd, 2015, deliberately low-balled the estimate in order to have you sign the mortgage papers, only for you to discover that the actual expenses are much higher.  Today, with the new Truth-in-Lending-Act(TILA) / Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act(RESPA) Integrated Disclosures – that’s a mouthful for saying the new acronym, TRID – Lenders are BOUND to the penny for the estimates provided on the Loan Estimate.  And that’s a good thing – in case you are puzzled.  If the lender low-balls and the actual costs are higher, the lender will pay the difference, not the buyer.

How Your Closing Costs Break Down

You’ll want to get LE’s from several different lenders and compare the costs before signing a mortgage agreement. Your lender will give you a breakdown of costs in your LE. But in general, there are certain closing costs you can expect to pay.

Plano home real estateOne cost that some lenders include is the loan origination fee, a small charge to compensate the lender for the time it takes to prepare the initial loan documents. Sometimes these fees can be called Processing, Underwriting, Closing, Admin, etc. This fee typically runs, in the Plano, TX market between $1100 to $1500. Many times these fees can be offset by an interest rate premium that will lower the borrowers out of pocket costs.There is also appraisal and credit report fees that can range from $450 – $750.

You’ll be expected to pay your attorney fees as well as the lender’s attorney fees. Your lender may require you to get private mortgage insurance, if you put down less than 20%. The title search and title Plano home real estateinsurance to protect your lender from title fraud will depend on you sales price (typically 1%).

There are also several other closing costs to keep in mind, like escrow fees, notary fees, pest inspections.

Closing costs can be quite expensive, which is why you’ll want to make sure you budget appropriately when you buy your new home. Warren Whitaker, your mortgage professional, can help you to figure out how much you need to budget for closing costs. Call Warren today to learn more about budgeting for the home buying process @ 972.523.8353.

Plano Home LoansIf you have a Plano home and mortgage, you’re probably looking for the best option to pay it off. Monthly mortgage payments are an easy-to-manage way to pay for your house – in fact, they’re the most common form of mortgage payment  but now, many homeowners are discovering that biweekly payments offer them better results.

So is a biweekly payment the better option for you? Which payment strategy best fits your individual circumstances? Here’s what you need to know.

Biweekly Payments: Pay Off Your Mortgage Faster and Save on Interest

Biweekly payments are becoming increasingly popular for a variety of reasons. With a biweekly payment, you’ll pay less money in total interest payments Plano Real Estateover the course of the whole mortgage, and you’ll pay your mortgage off faster. Biweekly payments also make it easier to budget for your mortgage because they coincide with your paycheck, and the biweekly payment system forces you to make extra payments toward your principal.

That said, biweekly payments also have some disadvantages. If you’ve bought a home at the very top tier of what you can afford, you might not have the budget flexibility for extra payments. Your lender may also force you to pay a $300 setup fee or a processing fee for each payment.

Monthly Payments: Easier to Afford for Large Homes

Paying your mortgage off on a monthly basis has long been the standard, for a variety of reasons – for instance, most homeowners are typically more comfortable with monthly payments as they were the norm during the owner’s years as a renter. It may also be easier to manage monthly payments if you work as an independent contractor and don’t always get paid every two weeks.

MortgageMonthly mortgage payments are more affordable for owners of larger homes, which typically come with larger mortgages. A monthly payment schedule also means you make one less payment per year, and for those on a strict budget, this can help to make the daily necessities of life more affordable.

Monthly mortgage payments were once the expected norm, but now, a lot of homeowners are choosing to make biweekly payments in order to pay off their mortgages faster and better budget their money. Monthly payments still remain popular, though, for a variety of reasons.

So which one is better for you? Warren Whitaker, NMLS#620924, 972-523-8353, can help you determine your best course of action. Call Warren today to learn more about your mortgage payment options.

Plano home loansAs a Plano home buyer, you may go through a number of different steps to ensure that the property that you purchase is in great condition. For example, you may complete an initial walk-through or even several home tours before you make an offer. You may also order a property inspection and even negotiate for the seller to make some repairs on your behalf. A day or two before your closing date, you may set up a final walk-through to ensure that the home is still in the same condition as the initial inspection. In most cases, there will be no problems with the final inspection. However, in the event that there is a problem with the final inspection, you will need to know how to handle it.

Work With Your Real Estate AgentPlano home loans

As a first step, you should discuss the issues with your Plano real estate agent. Your real estate agent may have some strategies or ideas that can be used to help you overcome the issue in the best possible way. Minor issues may be resolved with a last minute negotiation to the sales contract. More significant issues may need to be rectified prior to closing, and you may need to delay the closing by a few days or longer until any issues are resolved.

Consider Walking Away

Plano Home loansIt may be rare for a property to have issues during the final home inspection, and most issues that do arise at this late stage in the buying process may be resolved through negotiations between the buyer and seller. However, in the event that the seller plays hard ball and refuses to work with you to resolve the matter or in the event that the issue is so significant that you are not comfortable with it, it may be an option to walk away from the property.

In most sales contracts, wording is present that requires the property to be delivered to the buyer in the same condition as it was when the contract was signed less general wear and tear. Walking away may not be ideal, but it may be the best option in some cases.

Making a final home inspection is not a requirement, but it is advisable. It can ensure that the home your purchase is in the same condition as it was when you did the initial walk-through, and you can apply these tips if you discover that the home is not in the same condition.

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