집을 살때

집 (주택 부동산 ) 을 살때 순서 방법 어스틴 (오스틴) 텍사스

Top things to know

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Author
admin
Date
2006-04-15 22:41
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806


Top things to know
 
Shape up your credit and determine your affordability range before starting the hunt.

1. Don't buy if you can't stay put.

If you can't commit to remaining in one place for at least a few years, then owning is probably not for you, at least not yet. With the transaction costs of buying and selling a home, you may end up losing money if you sell any sooner.

2. Start by shoring up your credit.


Since you most likely will need to get a mortgage to buy a house, you must make sure your credit history is as clean as possible. A few months before you start house hunting, get copies of your credit report. Make sure the facts are correct, and fix any problems you discover.

3. Aim for a home you can really afford.

The rule of thumb is that you can buy housing that runs about two-and-one-half times your annual salary. But you'll do better to use one of many calculators available online to get a better handle on how your income, debts, and expenses affect what you can afford.

4. Don't worry if you can't put down the usual 20 percent.

There are a variety of public and private lenders who, if you qualify, offer low-interest mortgages that require a down payment as small as 3 percent of the purchase price.

5. Buy in a district with good schools.

In most areas, this advice applies even if you don't have school-age children. Reason: When it comes time to sell, you'll learn that strong school districts are a top priority for many home buyers, thus helping to boost property values.

6. Get professional help.

Even though the Internet gives buyers unprecedented access to home listings, it's still a good idea to use an agent. Look for an exclusive buyer agent, if possible, who will have your interests at heart and can help you with strategies during the bidding process.

7. Choose carefully between points and rate.

When picking a mortgage, you usually have the option of paying additional points -- a portion of the interest that you pay at closing -- in exchange for a lower interest rate. If you stay in the house for a long time -- say five to seven years or more -- it's usually a better deal to take the points. The lower interest rate will save you more in the long run.

8. Before house hunting, get pre-approved.

Getting pre-approved will you save yourself the grief of looking at houses you can't afford and put you in a better position to make a serious offer when you do find the right house. Not to be confused with pre-qualification, which is based on a cursory review of your finances, pre-approval from a lender is based on your actual income, debt and credit history.

9. Do your homework before bidding.

Your opening bid should be based on the sales trend of similar homes in the neighborhood. So before making it, consider sales of similar homes in the last three months. If homes have recently sold at 5 percent less than the asking price, you should make a bid that's about eight to 10 percent lower than what the seller is asking.

10. Hire a home inspector.

Sure, your lender will require a home appraisal anyway. But that's just the bank's way of determining whether the house is worth the price you've agreed to pay. Separately, you should hire your own home inspector, preferably an engineer with experience in doing home surveys in the area where you are buying. His or her job will be to point out potential problems that could require costly repairs down the road.  

Are you ready?
 
Don't buy a house just because you can afford it. Make sure it fits with your lifestyle.

Before we get into the nuts and bolts of this lesson, a bit of advice for first-time homebuyers (current owners may want to skip to the following section; sellers to the final one):

Sure, owning a home is one of the key elements of the American Dream. Home ownership means you no longer pay monthly rent for the roof over your head. Now you own it, and most of what's under it too. You can do what you want with your house (within reason). When you leave, you can sell it to recoup the purchase price and -- with any luck -- earn a profit too.

But like most good things in life, home ownership comes with a slew of disadvantages, responsibilities and downright headaches. In fact, it's probably the second biggest financial commitment most people ever make -- the biggest being children. So before going any further, consider whether your lifestyle and finances make homebuying a smart move.


Let's start with lifestyle. Except in a roaring real estate market, it usually doesn't make sense to buy a home you'll own for less than three or four years. Reason: the high transaction cost of buying and selling property means you could lose money on the deal. If you do make money on the deal, you'll pay capital gains taxes if you're in the house less than two years.

So ask yourself if you can really stay put for that long. Will you need to move because you are transferred by your current employer or a new one? Are you thinking of going back to school? Will your income remain steady or grow, or is it likely to decrease?

Some more mundane, but equally important, questions: Do you want to call the plumber, and pay for his services, every time a pipe leaks? Or would you rather leave it to the landlord to fix the plumbing, paint the walls, patch the roof and buy a new refrigerator? There's nothing wrong with that.

On the financial side, one key question is whether it costs more, on average, to rent or own in your area. If you want to calculate this out on your own, the rule of thumb is that if you pay 35 percent less in rent than you would for owning -- including the monthly mortgage, property taxes and any homeowner's fees -- then it's smarter to keep renting. You could also ask a real estate or rental agent to help you figure this out.

Only if all those answers still point towards owning should you proceed to the next step -- lining up the cash.  

 

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