The idea of buying your first home can be overwhelming for some.  Working with a professional realtor can help alleviate many of the stressors that can make buying a home a process that is intimidating.  To simplify the process even further follow the checklist below.

Complete a credit check: You need to have solid credit to apply for and receive a mortgage.  This is why the first step in the process of home ownership is completing a credit check.  This will allow you to correct any errors that exist with your credit report.  A low credit score means a higher interest rate on your mortgage.  If your score is incredibly low and you have several late or missing payments take time to correct these issues before looking into purchasing a home.

Set a budget with mortgage preapproval: Setting a budget is simple especially when you look into getting pre-approved.  A pre-approval will give you an idea of exactly how much the mortgage lenders feel comfortable in lending to you.  This is the amount they feel you will be able to pay back to them in monthly payments including interest.  A rule of thumb in general is that your home that cost between two and a half to three times your yearly salaries.  Most lenders will not allow you to spend more than thirty six percent of your gross monthly income.

Gather cash savings: It is preferable to have a down payment of twenty percent when buying a home.  This will account for your closing costs as well as your down payment.  Twenty percent allows you to avoid paying private mortgage insurance.  Different loan options have different regulations.  It is crucial to have as much cash on hand as possible when buying a home to have a substantial down payment as well as money for closing costs and fees as well as additional expenses that occur with moving into a new home.

Find a local real estate agent: This is perhaps one of the most critical requirements to finding and purchasing a home.  A local real estate agent that specializes in finding homes for clients with specialized circumstances is most favorable.  If you are a new home buyer find a realtor that specializes in new home purchases.  If you are looking for a home on a lake or golf course find a realtor that finding homes to fit a recreational lifestyle.

There is more to come in our next installment on simplifying the homeownership process.

Lady of the Lakes Real Estate is Livingston County’s premiere realtor; out of Pinckney, Michigan helping buyers buy and sellers sell homes that provide a recreational lifestyle including golf courses, lakes and the Huron river chain of lakes, throughout Brighton, Howell, Pinckney and the surrounding area.  More information can be found at