Assuming you are not paying cash the first step in the buying process is to get pre-qualified for a mortgage.
Why get pre-qualified?
- It gives you a guideline as to how much you can afford.
- Sellers will not even look at an offer unless the buyer is per-qualified.
- Lets you know how much you will need for a down payment.
- Gives you an estimate as to what your closing costs will be.
In most cases when a bank or mortgage broker "pre-qualifies" you they are taking your word as to how much income you have, how long you have been at your current job, and what monies you have available for the transaction. Do NOT overstate any of this information. It will come back and haunt you.
Visit our “Mortgage” link. Here you will also see what information you will need to supply to the bank or mortgage broker. There is also a mortgage calculator for you to see, in general, what your mortgage payments will be.
After you are pre-qualified you will know how much you can afford to spend, your “Budget”. That does not mean that you have to spend all of the "Budget". It just gives you a guide as to what you can afford to buy.