Why should I buy, instead of rent?
A home is an investment. When you rent, you write your monthly check to your landlord and that money is gone forever. But when you own your home, you can deduct the cost of your mortgage loan interest from your federal income taxes. This will save you a lot each year, because the interest you pay will make up most of your monthly payment for most of the years of your mortgage. You can also deduct the property taxes you pay as a homeowner. In addition, the value of your home may go up over the years. Finally, you’ll enjoy having something that’s all yours.
Should I use a real estate agent? How do I find one?
Using a real estate agent is a very good idea. All the details involved in home buying, particularly the financial ones, can be mind-boggling. A good real estate professional can guide you through the entire process and make the experience much easier. A real estate agent will be well-acquainted with all the important things you’ll want to know about a neighborhood you may be considering…the quality of schools, the number of children in the area, the safety of the neighborhood, traffic volume, and more. A real estate agent can also help you determine your price range.
What do I need when I apply for a mortgage?
If you take the time to gather all of this information, it will speed up your time with the lender.
You should have:
- Social security numbers for both your and your spouse, if both of you are applying for the loan.
- Copies of your checking and savings account statements for the past 6 months.
- Evidence of any other assets like bonds or stocks.
- A recent paycheck stub detailing your earnings.
- A list of all credit card accounts and the approximate monthly amounts owed on each.
- A list of account numbers and balances due on outstanding loans, such as car loans.
- Copies of your last 2 years’ income tax statements.
- The name and address of someone who can verify your employment.
- Depending on your lender, you may be asked for additional information.
I know there are lots of types of mortgages – how do I know which one is best for me?
There are many types of mortgages, and the more you know about them before you start, the better. Most people use a fixed-rate mortgage. In a fixed rate mortgage, your interest rate stays the same for the term of the mortgage, which normally is 30 years. The advantage of a fixed-rate mortgage is that you always know exactly how much your mortgage payment will be, and you can plan for it. Another kind of mortgage is an Adjustable Rate Mortgage (ARM). With this kind of mortgage, your interest rate and monthly payments usually start lower than a fixed rate mortgage. But your rate and payment can change either up or down, as often as once or twice a year. The adjustment is tied to a financial index, such as the U.S. Treasury Securities index. The advantage of an ARM is that you may be able to afford a more expensive home because your initial interest rate will be lower. There are also many government mortgage programs.
Who can answer all my home financing questions?
Just give the Cathy Stubbs team a call. Before you go through the home buying process, come talk to us, and we can give you and idea of what to expect. Some buyers feel overwhelmed with all the talk about down payments, seller disclosures, loan origination fees, points, and closing costs. It helps to talk to someone who has been through it numerous times. As experts, we are here to make the home buying process seamless.
Cornerstone Mortgage Company
Mobile: (713) 829-0305
Office: (713) 212-3064
AMCAP Premier Mortgage, TLD
Mobile: (281) 728-5421
Fax: (281) 565-5101