When looking at tips for first time home buyers, you've come to the right place.
Many people are looking all over the Internet for reliable information. There's over 761,940 websites (as of March 05) with information or online forms urging you to fill them out for more details.
While I certainly agree the Internet is a great place for obtaining tips for first time home buyers, it can also become a real information overload as well. So I want to give you some tips that can help in your search.
Tips for First Time Home Buyers #1
Don't be too quick!
Avoid giving out your personal information like Social Security number, date of birth etc. at every website that asks for it. This is the single biggest mistake I've seen made. Some first time home buyers in their zeal to get started do this.
The problem is this, many sites will require this information before they'll give you any details. They start out with a simple, name and address screen, then lead into screens that ask for more personal details.
At all costs, hold off giving out this private information. You will have to at some point in time. But, not until you've learned about the mortgage process should you do this. What happens when you fill in the forms online? Your e-mail box will be flooded with loan offers.
Many places tout they'll have 4 lenders or even more give you quotes. Guess what? Nearly every one of these lenders are going to run a credit report. If you have numerous inquires in your credit in one month, this can affect your credit score.
Another reason to be careful here is that most of these websites are just lead generators. The company or webmaster will sell your information to one or perhaps even more sources and then we have a BIG problem. It can costs you in your credit score. The lower your credit score, the higher your interest rate will be. The higher your credit score the lower your interest rate.
Let me tell you a quick little story. I once was dealing with a person who wanted to refinance. We had gone online and fill out several forms at different websites. By the time he got to me, when I was able to look at his credit score, he had over 100 inquiries in his credit in one month. His credit score was so low I couldn't help him. Save yourself this grief, be careful!
Tips for First Time Home Buyers #2
Work with someone you trust.
How can you determine if that person is honest and trustworthy? Listen to them closely. Are they trying to hurry you along to get your personal information? Or are they taking the time to explain things and help you to understand exactly what you're about to get into?
Buying a home is the single biggest investment most people make in their lifetime. Then afterwards, managing that debt is important also. You want to work with someone who will help you do this. They should be interested in a long term relationship with you.
Over your lifetime you'll get more than 1 mortgage. I know, it's hard to imagine that now, but statistic's show that on average people move or get a new home loan about every 7 years.
Having someone you trust, that has your best interest is what you need. I look at it this way, if I do a good job for you, you might tell 1-2 of your friends. If I did a bad job for you, you'll tell 100 of your friends.
I build my mortgage business 1 loan at a time. I love referrals so I take a personal interest in each and every borrower. My customers talk about me to their friends!!
Tips for First Time Home Buyers #3
Choose your Loan Officer wisely.
Now because of the Internet, home lending has become a big business. Mortgage Brokers and Lenders have popped up everywhere. Many have also fallen by the roadside at the same time.
The money business is HUGE! Did you know that over 1.3 TRILLION dollars changes hands around the globe everyday?? When you start to think about it, it staggers your mind.
Your First Time Home Buyers loan is just a very small part of daily business.
There's a big difference between a lender and a broker. Brokers are middle men between you and the lender. They get paid for brokering your loan. They also can help you get loan offers from many lenders. Since the mortgage broker gets wholesale pricing, this can be good if it's done without running your credit every time. That's why I say choose your Loan Officer wisely.
Many times when working with a broker, you may not know who your lender is until the day of closing. Again, this is still alright if your loan is locked, you know all the details of the loan product and so forth. What's important is that the Loan Officer has revealed all the correct information.
Is it a fixed rate loan? Is it an ARM? Is the interest rate what he quoted you in the beginning??
I can't tell you how many times I've heard horror story's about last minute changes. The buyer finds out that their closing costs are more, the interest rate is higher etc. When you're at the closing table, the buyer's there, the seller and the realtors. Emotions are running high! What are you going to do??
If you go ahead and close because the pressures on, it's going to cost you thousands of dollars over the years. Many ruthless loan officers have done this to first time home buyers and just don't care. They may never see your face anyway. You're just a paycheck to them.
Working with someone you trust can help avoid this problem and save you money. Dealing with a loan officer who is on your side will protect you. Nevertheless if you've been taken advantage of, this is a RESPA violation and they should be reported.