Careful planning the key to home purchase

Jean-Guy Turcotte

People fear what they don’t understand.

A good example is the purchase of a home. The average consumer knows very little regarding the home buying process. Between finding the right house, making sure it won’t fall apart the day after is it purchased and finding the best financing; it is no wonder that so many people are afraid to purchase their first home. With what we’ve all seen in the market as of late, this decision is even harder to make, but if you can see the forest through the trees, there is a lot of opportunity today especially with near record low interest rates.

The following steps will start you on your journey to home ownership:

1.

Visualize yourself as a homeowner:

Before starting your house search, allow yourself to imagine what it will be like to be a homeowner. Homeownership can be one of the most significant financial turning points in their lives. Imagine a yard for the kids to run around in, a garage for your car, a kitchen to entertain in and all this on a quiet street. The advantages far outweigh the drawbacks.

2. Understand your credit:

Your credit history is one of the first things a lender will look at in making a decision on your mortgage. Visit www.equifax.ca or www.transunion.ca to obtain your credit report. Review it carefully to be sure the information is correct. Most people need help with this step, and I am available free of charge to help you with understanding your credit report and resolving any issues.

3. Determine how much money you have for a down payment: Saving for a down payment can be one of the biggest barriers to homeownership. Mortgage lenders recognize this dilemma and many now offer new products with low down payment options. Five per cent down payments are the most common and there are still mortgages available that require no down payment; they are called Cash-Back or Free Down Payment mortgages.

4. Choosing the right lender for you:

There are a lot of banks, credit unions, trust companies and mortgage lenders for you to choose from. A mortgage broker has all of these companies available to you at discounted prices and you only have to make one stop and we don’t charge a fee.

5. Get pre-approved for a mortgage:

Before you begin looking for houses with a realtor or builder, see your mortgage professional and get pre-approved for a mortgage. I rarely have a client that buys a home first then gets an approval. The pre-approval will tell you how much you can afford, how much down payment you require, if there are any discrepancies on your credit report to be resolved, what your payments will be and what interest rate you qualify for. You will be better prepared when making your decision, it could save you thousands of dollars in interest with our 120-day rate hold program, and the best part is, it’s all free of charge!

6. Use the professionals to help with your research:

Mortgage agents, realtors and builders have a ton of expertise at their helm, and if they are any good, they’ll have reading material for you to take with you to help with your research! Like any professional services you seek, ensure you find the right person: meaning check their credentials!

Jean-Guy Turcotte is an Accredited Mortgage Professional at Dominion Lending Centres-Regional Mortgage Group and can be reached for appointments at 403-343-1125 texted to 403-391-2552 or via email at jturcotte@regionalmortgage.ca.

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