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Mortgage Basics


7 Steps of the Mortgage Process,

Mortgage 1 inc has the experience to successfully guide you through the mortgage process.

First time home buyer tips

10 First Time Home Buyer Tips Buying a home can be one of the most exciting and rewarding things you ever do. How you experience the home buying process depends entirely on how well prepared you are and how knowledgeable your Lending professional is. here are 10 First Time Home Buyer Tips to get you started.

1. Get Pre-Approved

Pre-approved home buyers get preferential treatment when negotiating home purchases. Why? Because pre-approved buyers are financially qualified to purchase the home and are considered more serious than buyers who are Pre-approved. Nothing feels worse than finding the ideal home in the perfect area and then not being able to get financing.



2. Selecting a Realtor

One of the most important steps in the process. This Agent will be in partnership with you through out the home buying process. Home buyers normally confided confidential information on both a business level and often on a personal level. The Agent will be dealing with any and all issues during the home buying process. Once future homeowners select someone, they should sign them as a buyer’s agent. That is the best way to make sure the realtor has the buyers best interests first.


3. Credit Score Warning

Now is not the time for any changes in credit behavior, but borrowers should;

  • Pay on time – Set up payment reminders and auto payments if offered. Delinquent payments, even if a few days past the due date can have a negative impact on your FICO Scores.
  • Reduce the amount of money you owe – Use your credit report to make a list of all credit cards and their interest rate. Focus on paying off the higher interest rate cards, while maintaining the monthly minimum due to the other creditors.
  • Credit Cards – Avoid credit card purchases. DO NOT close the unused credit cards as a short term strategy to raise your score. DO NOT open any new credit cards without talking to a Mortgage 1 Lender first. New account will not help your credit for six months.
  • Pay off down debt – The amount of debt you’re carrying on your credit cards plays a critical role in credit scoring. Borrowers should strive to keep balances in-between 5-9% of the high credit.
  • Be patient and persistent – Patience isn’t a factor that’s used to calculate credit scores, but it’s something people need to have while getting back on track. Credit isn’t damaged overnight, so don’t expect it to improve in that amount of time.


4. Look at homes

It is important to limit the number of homes looked in one day because they begin to run together. It’s a good idea to use a checklist to help future home buyers track the properties they have seen. It is also helpful to actually begin to narrow down the properties after each visit. For example, if house #3 was better than house #2, immediately eliminate house #2.

Communicate which houses you don’t like and why. Sometimes it takes going out and looking one time before home buyers and agents really have a good grip on exactly what they are looking for. If home buyers become interested in a for-sale-by- owner, they should ask their agent to contact the seller to see if the seller will cooperate (pay a commission) with a buyer’s agent.



5. Select a home


Once the search is narrowed down to one or two homes, the agent will do whatever research necessary to help, but the decision will ultimately be the home buyers. Once they selected one home to focus on, the agent will do a comparative market analysis on that property. This involves determining “fair market value” by looking at what other buyers were willing to pay for properties similar to the target in the same neighborhood or area.



6. Making an offer and negotiation


When making an offer on a property, it is important to decide ahead of time how much to offer for the house. The agent‘s market analysis should help in the initial offer price. If there is any personal property that the buyer would like to include add it to the purchase agreement. The purchase agreement should include when the buyer plans to close; and what inspections are planed.


Once the offer has been presented, the seller will either accept the offer outright, reject the offer outright, or counter offer. The counter process can go back and forth many times. It’s important for all parties to keep their cool and focus on the goal.



7. Get inspections and remove conditions 


If, as part of your offer, you asked for time to be allowed to have inspections conducted on the property, you should have written what is called a conditional offer. Offers can be conditional upon financing, inspections, the receipt of acceptable condo estoppels certificates, the sale of property, and many other conditions. It is important that all deadlines be met and that all conditions are removed exactly the way the contract describes. Your agents are responsible for making sure this is done correctly.


8. Mortgage Process

The mortgage process can range anywhere from 30-45 days. For detailed steps please visit our Mortgage Process page.



9. Walk-through


Most sales agreements will give the buyer the right to one pre-closing inspection. This is the last chance to find any problems and have the seller correct them. Read the contract carefully, but most contracts read that all electrical systems, plumbing, appliances, heating, and air conditioning need to be in working order at the time of closing. These are the items you checking for at walk-through along with any other items the seller previously agreed to fix or replace.


  • If anything is found to be defective or missing, there are several options: The seller can remedy the problem prior to closing; the seller can credit the buyer for the amount of money it would take to hire someone to remedy the problem; or the seller can promise to correct the problem and place into escrow with the attorney the amount of money you will need to pay someone else if the seller does not perform as promised.
  • On new-home purchases, the process is a little different. The builder will generally do a walk-through with you approximately one to two weeks prior to closing, resulting in a “punch list.”  Hopefully, they will get everything on the punch list completed prior to settlement. If not, most new-home contracts allow the builder to complete whatever minor items have been noted in a “reasonable” period of time.



10. Closing on your home

Borrowers should recieve and sign your closing disclosure at least three days prior. At closing the borrower will have to bring a copy of their identification and their form of payment in either cashier's check or wired funds, whichever the title company requires. You'll be signing a lot of documents, but everything will be clearly explained by your closing rep from the title company. Depending on what amount of occupancy you've agreed upon you will either get your keys at closing, or the occupancy clock starts ticking. If you are not getting your keys, you will be getting a form for you to sign and turn into the title company to release any money that may be being held from the seller for occupancy.







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