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First-Time Homeowner’s Checklist: How to Know If You’re Ready to Buy

3 min read

Buying a home is a huge step that may feel overwhelming to those who haven’t done it before.  Although everyone’s journey to homeownership is different, these are the top signs to let you know that you’re ready to buy.

Reliable Income

How long have you worked at your job?  Do you get paid well at it?  One of the first steps to buy a house is showing your lender your proof of income.  If you can show that you’ve worked hard to maintain a job, received raises, and stayed with this company for a sizable amount of time, you’ll be ready to buy a home.

Two Kinds of Savings

Although it may sound strange to have two different kinds of savings, it’s a smart idea to ensure you are prepared for anything.  One type of savings is for emergencies and should be almost always available, just a transfer away.  These savings should be around three months of income.  The other savings should be a general saving that is kept in an account that has a good interest rate to ensure it grows.

Stable Home or Relationship Life

If you’re a dual-income couple, and you’re buying a home based on both of your salaries, it’s vital that you go into this in a healthy relationship.  If you already have doubts about the relationship or aren’t getting along with your partner more than the moments where you do get along, a house isn’t going to fix this.

A Credit Score That Rocks

The better your credit score is, the better chance you’ll have at getting a low-interest rate and a fantastic lender.  To help yourself out, try to spend a few years before you buy a home getting your credit score up to at least 750.  Although scores can go up well above 800, most perks that come from excellent credit are around the same from 750 and up.

The Ability to Handle Other Bills That Come With It

Homes aren’t like rentals.  When you buy a house, you have to be able to pay for the basics like electricity, internet, and the house payment, of course- but you also have to pay property tax, maintenance, replace your roof and siding, homeowners’ insurance, lawn maintenance, HOA fees, and dozens of other little costs and bills that will pop up as you live there.

An Agent or Realtor to Help You

You might not like the idea of paying the three to six percent commission on your property that comes up, but it’s vital that you take the time to pay an agent or realtor so they can help you.  These professionals can help you find better-fitting properties, can help you get them for lower prices and will work with your needs instead of working around them.

You Can Be a Homeowner if You’re Ready!

Although the American dream may feel out of reach at times, more people are becoming homeowners now than in the last fifteen years.  If you’ve checked off every item on this list, it could be time for you to buy a home!

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