Often times, at open houses, I hear people express misconceptions about buying a house for the first time, I hear them say they, “We’re just looking and dreaming for now because we don’t qualify for a home mortgage due to our credit score” or because they haven’t saved enough for a down payment.
The Down Payment
When I ask people how much they think they need for a down payment, most will answer 20%. And, that was true many years ago. Now, we have several options available to qualifying buyers where the down payment can be as low as 3% or even no money down in some instances.
The Credit Score
The other big hurdle stopping people from trying to buy a house revolves around credit scores. Before the housing crash in 2006, getting qualified for a home was very easy, then the lenders tightened credit to only those with seemingly perfect credit. Now that the crash is over and the housing markets are more stable, banks are starting to become more relaxed again and are giving out loans to those with lower credit scores than they were a few years ago. It’s still not like it was in 2005, I think the banks learned their lessons, but it is much easier than it was not too long ago. Some of the options available can go as low as 550. But, if your score is below 550, keep checking with a lender because this figure seems to be going down on a regular basis.
Misconceptions About Buying a House in the Lansing Area
I know in the Lansing area and surrounding communities the inventory or number of homes on the market is much lower than it has been in years past. It’s really important you work with an agent that is searching everyday for homes for you. When a home hits the market that meets the criteria you have, you need to know about it the same day and be ready to make a decision right away. It’s a really competitive market right now but you can still find what you are looking for if you have the right help.
If you would like to know more specifics about down payments or qualifying credit scores, please feel free to contact me….