7 Best-Kept Secrets for Buying a Home

Real Estate by  Mashum Mollah 09 October 2020 Last Updated Date: 05 March 2021

Buying a Home

Buying a home shouldn’t be an impulse purchase. It’s a major investment, possibly the largest one you’ll make in your life.

With that much importance, it’s a good idea to do some research and planning prior to diving into the world of homeownership.

The good news is that there are lots of tips to help make this purchase smooth for you. Learn these seven best-kept secrets before you start looking for your dream home to make the process a breeze.

Here are 7 Best-Kept Secrets for Buying a Home:

1. Credit Really is Important

Buying a house with poor credit isn’t impossible. It’s just not financially smart.

The lower your credit score, the higher of a risk you are seen as by lenders. Sure, there are tons of alternative financing sources out there today, so you can still get a loan. But you’ll be paying a much higher interest rate.

If you can work on your credit to bump it up a few points, your interest rate could go down even 1%. That little decrease is enough to save you almost $100/month for your payments, and tens of thousands of dollars in interest.

With that much at stake, it’s worth putting a pause on your purchase while you work on your credit.

2. Don’t Be a Big Spender

The mortgage lenders are going to be evaluating your financial history with a fine-toothed comb. They want to know how much you earn and how much you spend.

The debt-to-income ratio of your outstanding credit and bills is almost as important as your credit score in general. Try not to use up your credit on any big purchases for at least six months before you buy your home.

If you can pay down some of your debt, that will help increase your credit score and decrease your debt-to-income ratio.

This is a savvy financial move on multiple counts. You pay off a bill that had interest accruing. Your credit score goes up and the mortgage interest rate goes down. All of these are going to save you more than you paid in the first place!

3. Consider Alternatives to Traditional Houses

What is the most important factor for you in your future home? If it’s price or location, you might want to consider alternatives to the traditional house-hunting route.

Today’s manufactured homes are comparable or better than renting for affordability. Or maybe you were going to settle for something less than you really wanted to keep the payments low.

Manufactured houses give you the control of choosing a property in the neighborhood you want. You can upgrade many of the features and still keep your mortgage payments where you want them to be.

4. There Are More Costs Than You Think

Have you ever bought a car? If so, you know the amount the dealership quotes you for a payment isn’t exactly what you’re actually going to pay. By the time they tack on things like tag, title, warranties, and other miscellaneous items, your total is usually not what you were expecting.

The house buying process is kind of like that. Your monthly payment is going to be more than the lender quotes you because your final number will include property taxes, insurance, transfer cost, to name a few.

Be prepared to pay more than you were estimated by the time everything is done and signed.

5. Know the Difference Between Pre-Approved and Pre-Qualified

As you start shopping for your new home, the realtors or sellers involved are going to ask you if you are pre-qualified or pre-approved. Getting a mortgage preapproval will help you secure your dream home at the soonest possible time.

If you haven’t spoken to a lender yet and aren’t making a cash buy, don’t be surprised if they don’t take you seriously. Serious buyers have already done the legwork with lenders to find out what their price range is.

Pre-qualified means you’re not done yet, but you meet the vague description of someone who could get a loan. Until you’re pre-approved, no lender has looked at your financials and given you an interest rate and loan amount.

6. Put Down a Down Payment

Putting money down to offset the costs of your mortgage gives you a major edge. If you’re able to save enough for a down payment, you’ll reap the benefits of:

  • Lower monthly payments
  • Less interest paid out
  • Better interest rates
  • More negotiating power

Lenders look at someone who is able to save for a hefty down payment as a good financial risk. You were able to allocate funds for long-term savings, so you’re more likely to be able to handle your mortgage payment,

7. You’re Buying the Neighborhood, Too

Unless you’re dead-set on a certain neighborhood, be cautious about where your house-hunting leads you. Coveted school districts or those with certain amenities can raise the prices of homes significantly.

Are you more interested in a school district or lower mortgages? A gated community or updated home? You’ll have to make your choices so you know what areas to search in and where to avoid.


Contrary to many people’s beliefs, you are not at the mercy of your mortgage lender when you’re buying a house. With these seven secrets, you can have the home of your dreams at a price you can afford!

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Mashum Mollah

Mashum Mollah is an entrepreneur, founder and CEO at Viacon, a digital marketing agency that drive visibility, engagement, and proven results. He blogs at thedailynotes.com/.

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