When you’re buying a home, you’re going to have questions. Maybe those questions include:
How much can I afford?
Should I get pre-approved or pre-qualified?
How do I pick a mortgage banker?
Or maybe you have a million more questions. Either way, knowing what to ask and establishing a base knowledge of homebuying can make your first mortgage meeting a cinch.
To provide an introduction to homebuying, we asked a mortgage banker to tell us the top three questions she gets. With those out of the way, you can move on to the homebuying specifics and show off your smarts at the same time.
According to mortgage banker Lauri Solberg, these are the most common questions:
Q. What do you offer for first time homebuyers?
A. “This is usually the first question I get, and it really depends on the homebuyer. Typically, I would recommend just coming in to talk and getting an application started. When we can look at your whole financial picture, we can see what would fit your needs best. There might be an option you might not have considered, but that’s all dependent on personal factors like income and debt, and a complete financial history.”
Q. What’s the minimum down payment I need?
A. “This is kind of the same response as the first question. The minimum down payment depends on how you qualify. You might be able to get by with as little as 3% down. But you have to come in and apply to know for sure. Certain factors can influence this decision.
On the other hand, with 20% down, you can eliminate private mortgage insurance (PMI). Typically, there’s not too many people that have that down payment ready. However, that depends on your situation.
Another factor to consider is that a down payment can be gifted. Some people could also qualify for down payment assistance for certain income levels. When we look at your financial standing, we’ll know for sure.”
Q. How soon can we close?
A. “In short: pretty quickly! Because everything we do at National Bank of Commerce is done locally, we have the ability to close within a three-week window. That is, we have the ability if all goes well. It’s great when it happens. We’re proud, and homeowners are happy when they get into their home sooner. When they’ve found their house, they want to get in right away. And by working locally, we can help move that process along.”
With all this in mind, your best bet at getting the answers for your unique situation is meeting with a mortgage banker. According to Lauri, it’s never too early. Even if you just want to get an idea of what you need to save or how the process goes, a mortgage banker can be a huge help. You don’t have to fill out an application or verify information, but it’s always good to come in, have a conversation and get a little education on how to prepare for your future.
To get started, make an appointment