Tuesday, December 5, 2017 / by Bret Johnson
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What do you need to do now in order to get the best deal when buying a home in 2018? I have five tips for you today.
1. Check your credit score now. It’s important to know your FICO score. Any change in your score can mean thousands of additional dollars in interest or payments over the years. FICO scores run from 300 to 850, so knowing where you’re at will definitely help you prepare for the mortgage application.
2. Do not open new credit cards. I know that it’s super tempting to sign up for a retail card during the holiday season to take advantage of that 15% to 20% off. The issue is that the new trade line will affect you in the mortgage application process and hurt your purchase power down the road.
3. Interview potential real estate agents. Everyone knows a Realtor, whether it’s a family member or friend. Typically, the stress of buying a home can really affect your friendship. Find a neutral real estate agent who is knowledgeable about the area or a team who can offer a great level of service. Hiring the right real estate agent is crucial in order to find the best home and get the best deal possible.
4. Find a mortgage broker to help you. Most lenders have the same basic programs and can fight to get the best rate for you. It’s important that you find someone who will do the best job and make the process as hassle-free as possible. If you have a great lender behind you when you make an offer on a home, the seller will look more favorable on your offer. We can put you in touch with a few great lenders that we know.
5. Get pre-approved. You are excited about buying a home, and you just want to start looking. If you’re not pre-approved before you start your home search, then you may end up falling in love with a home with a higher mortgage payment than you're comfortable with. You may also lose the home of your dreams to another pre-approved buyer if you are scrambling to get your pre-approval in order. Get it done now so that you can make an offer right away when you find the home of your dreams.
If you have any other questions about buying a home in 2018, just give me a call or send me an email. My team and I would be happy to help you!