learn more about being a first-time home buyer
I’m a first-time home buyer - do you have programs that can help me?
Absolutely. We know of over 140 down-payment assistance programs that you may get approved for. If you qualify, first-time home buyers can put as little as 3% down on a conventional purchase or 3.5% on an FHA.
Everyone’s situation is different so make sure to fully understand your numbers... and make sure to get pre-approved - not pre-qualified - before looking. Getting pre-qualified is great for understanding your situation better but getting pre-approved means the money’s ready to go. Getting pre-approved allows you to know exact numbers (amount and interest rate). This also allows you to make an offer on a house and be taken seriously.
what happens in a pre-approval for a loan?
During a pre-approval, we validate all aspects of the loan process EXCEPT the property or collateral. This means that (when pre-approved) your money is literally waiting for you to find a home that qualifies. However, this is not to be confused with getting pre-qualified - which takes a cursory look at your scenario and compares it to guidelines. We can then see what the potential outcome can be if you go through the process and provide the documentation.
how long does it take for a loan to get processed?
Processing a loan varies from scenario to scenario. All loans are different, but generally a loan can go from application to funding in 30 days or less.
how do you determine the loan amount I can afford?
The amount you qualify for is in direct relationship with loan programs (check out the loan comparison table below) you're interested in, your debt-to-income ratio (DTI), the loan-to-value (LTV), and the depth of credit profile you have (which includes, of course, your credit score!). A good rule of thumb is 45% of your monthly income would go to pay all loans.