Be a Savvy First Time Home Buyer
Other than the research work, the most important thing you have to consider if you want to buy your first home is where to get the funds to pay for the house. There are several ways that you can do to start saving up for your first home.
If you have a Roth IRA account, you can use that to save for your first home. If you qualify as a first-time home buyer and planning to purchase a home not less than five years from now, you can avail of the five-year plan of Roth IRA. This plan allows you to withdraw your earnings before age 59 without paying any taxes, penalties or charges.
Another way is through personal savings. This has been an old and tested method of saving for anything. And it requires strict discipline and commitment. If you are earning a regular salary, you might want to consider having the bank automatically deduct a certain percentage of your salary once you receive them and transfer it to your own savings account. This way, you will not be tempted on spending all your salary and forget about saving. Also, you should try to avoid making frequent withdrawals with your savings account. The reason you opened it is so you can save for something that you want, like a home. As much as possible, try to gain access to your savings account only when there is sufficient funds to pay for the home you wish to buy.
When you are thinking of buying a new home, try to determine your target date. If you plan to purchase a house 2 years from now, or less, then putting your money in more conservative investment tools is the way to go.
However, if you are not planning to buy until five years from now or even more, then you can be more aggressive and start investing on higher yielding investments which tend to perform better over a long period.
Try to also look for some assistance. According to a survey done by the National Association of Realtors, 23% of first-time home buyers get their down payments as gifts from relatives or friends. However, if this is not possible for you, there are banks, charities and local government institutions that provide assistance to first-time home buyers. There are some that offer to lend 3% of the purchase price as part of the down payment. This borrowed money can be paid when the buyer refinances or pays off the loan, or sells the home.
Also, it is always a good practice to keep your bills updated to improve your credit rating. Having a good credit report lowers the interest rate charged on your mortgage. As early as possible, try to clean up your finances so when the time comes that you will apply for a mortgage, you wont have to deal with higher interest rates.
Buying your first home requires a lot of preparation. This is not a simple investment to make. The decision to buy a home is something that will affect you for the rest of your life so better be prepared as early as possible.