Not Quite Ready? Prepare to Buy a House!

Take these steps to get your finances in order so you are prepared to buy a house when the stars align.

prepare to buy a house
  1. Make a budget. It is easier to save for a down payment for a house if you know where and how you spend your money –  and have a concise plan.
  2. Talk to a loan officer about your buying power. They will consider your income versus your debts and will you know how much house you could potentially qualify for. Use this number as a purchase price for figuring how much your down payment will be. Required down payment amounts vary from 3.5% to 5%of purchase price. You can always put more down, but this is a minimum. Based on the calculation, the loan professional will also let you know how soon you will be ready to purchase.
  3. Think about the ideal location for your home. Where would you like to live? Most likely it will be close to where you live now, but the further away from the Seattle downtown core you can go, the more affordable it becomes. Considering that Seattle traffic is one of the nation’s most challenging, think about how long of a commute you are willing to do every day. Due to that reason, we frequently sell homes in the more traffic-friendly communities of Auburn, Covington, Maple Valley, and Black Diamond.
  4. Have any friends you trust and are willing to invest with you? Consider amplifying your buying power by buddying up with a friend. If you share an apartment or home now, instead of sharing the rent, you would simply share the mortgage payments. This concept makes a lot of sense in this hot real estate market.
  5. Are you currently renting? A good rental resource is When you sign a lease however, think about how soon you will be ready to purchase. It’s wise to consider that some landlords for apartments or homes allow for a 6 month term.

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Cathy Wahlin

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