The idea of buying your first home in Lakewood or Long Beach is exciting—and it’s also a little overwhelming.
Where do you even begin?
3 Essential Steps to Take Before You Buy a House in Lakewood or Long Beach
First things first: Start researching Lakewood Realtors® right away. When the time comes for you to buy your first home, you want a skilled professional by your side to ensure you’re dotting every i and crossing every t.
Step 1 for First-Time Home Buyers: Figure Out How Much House You Can Afford
If you’re borrowing money to buy a home by way of a mortgage loan, know that lenders want you to buy a house that costs less than five times your annual household income… and that’s if you make a 20 percent down payment and only have minimal debt from other loans, credit cards, and different lines of credit.
Your lender will also probably want your debt-to-income ratio to be lower than 36 percent, with no more than 28 percent going toward a mortgage payment.
If you pay $1,000 for a mortgage, $300 for your car, and $700 toward every other debt you owe, you’re paying out $2,000 per month. If your monthly income is $6,000, your debt-to-income ratio is 33.3 percent. (Divide your income by your debt; that’s a rough estimate of your debt-to-income ratio.)
Step 2 for First-Time Home Buyers: Get Preapproved
Talk to more than one lender to find out what terms they’re each willing to offer you. When you find the best terms, which include interest rates, the length of the loan, and other fees, ask for preapproval.
It’s a good idea to get preapproval before you start house-hunting, because that way, you’ll know exactly how much is in the budget for your new home—and you won’t waste time seeing homes that don’t fit within it.
Step 3 for First-Time Home Buyers: Start Shopping
Remember the Realtor you found at the beginning of your journey? It’s finally time to call her and let her know you’re ready to start seeing some homes. You can begin searching for Lakewood homes for sale on your own, but it’s also a good idea to let your agent know what you’re looking for; she may have the low-down on properties that meet your needs… even those that haven’t been listed yet. Your agent is the key to getting tours of the homes you like, making an offer, and running through the entire transaction (while ensuring it all goes smoothly, too), so rely on her expertise when it’s time to find your first home.
Are You Buying a Home in Lakewood or Long Beach?
Whether you’re buying a home in Lakewood, Long Beach, or one of the surrounding communities, we’d love to help. We’ll walk you through the entire process, from start to finish.
Call us at 562-882-1581 to find out how much your home is worth
In the meantime, feel free to explore our: