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Ashley W's blog

Finding a Good Deal on a Home

COVER YOUR BASES

Finding your home sweet home is a process that begins with knowing your credit score, finding a lender, and getting pre-approved for a mortgage. One surefire way to ensure your credit score is acceptable is maintaining a low debt balance―it should be no more than 30% of your available credit limit. Getting pre-approved for a mortgage puts you at an advantage because it means that the lender is confident you can make the necessary payments. Use your realtor as a resource to establish what your loan options are and then connect with a lender that fits you.

LOOK FOR THE SIGNS

Once you find a potential home, it’s crucial that you play detective―Nancy Drew style. Appraise, investigate, and look for red flags. Is there wood in the living room that’s starting to rot? Are the railings on the porch or the stairs a little bit wobbly? Note these things so they can be fixed before you move in. If not, you may be stuck cleaning out the gutters on day one. It’s also a good idea to ask for an inspection on the house just in case there are any issues that only a professional could see. Always keep in mind the home’s resale value, because the resale value of your first home can predict what kind of house you can buy the next time around. Hoggard says, “I not only want to help you find your next house, but I also want to help you sell this house. So, I’m very clear about which properties are going to be smarter, or could be mistakes later on when it comes to resale.”

Credit Score Fundamentals

A credit score may only be three digits, but that number is a big deal—it can sometimes determine the course of your life. From a lender’s perspective, your credit score indicates how likely you are to repay debts in a timely manner. Keep these quick tips in mind to get ahead of the game and establish and preserve good credit.

Questions for Every Room of the Open House

As you walk through an open house, different rooms may inspire different inquiries. With CENTURY 21®Real Estate’s insight, you may find it easier to know what to look for and prepare questions in advance. Take a look at the typical questions each area of the house usually elicits from potential home buyers.

The Front Door

Just seeing the exterior of the house in its neighborhood may lead to the following:

  • When were the windows installed?
  • How old is the roof?
  • What are the neighbors like?

Structural renovations, such as replacing drafty windows or aging roofs, may be costly. Since roofs tend to need replacement every 20 or 25 years, as the home buyer you will want to factor in maintenance costs. Neighbors are not so costly, but they may affect quality of life.