Wednesday, January 4, 2017

5 Questions to Ask Yourself Before Buying a Home

Are you considering becoming a homeowner for the first time? When it comes to purchasing a home at the Lake of the Ozarks, there are a lot of things you should consider. Before diving into the home buying process, ask yourself these 5 questions:

1. Am I Ready for Homeownership? 

Becoming a homeowner is a big undertaking. If you are used to renting, there are a lot of luxuries of having a landlord that will go away when you own your own home. What do you do when your heating or cooling system stops working? What if the garbage disposal breaks? Undertaking homeownership comes with a lot of added responsibility. While homeownership also comes with advantages, it is not a decision that should happen overnight. Consider what it means to be a homeowner and do your research before diving in.

2. Have I Considered ALL the Costs of Homeownership? 

Your Lake of the Ozarks mortgage is not the only expense you have to worry about. As a homeowner, you should consider the costs of insurance, taxes and utilities, as well as any repair needs that arise. Few buyers actually plan for these added costs; they look at the mortgage payment as being less than their current rent, but those are not the only numbers to consider.

3. How Much Can I Afford? 

One of the most common questions prospective homeowners ask is, "How much can I afford?" Before starting your home search, it is important to know what you can afford. You do not want to find the perfect house to realize it is out of your affordable price range. Talk to a mortgage lender at the Lake of the Ozarks to help you determine not only how much you can qualify for in a loan, but how much you can reasonably afford (with all the above homeownership costs considered). 

4. How Much Do I Have for a Downpayment?

While there are programs out there with little-to-no downpayment requirements, your downpayment is something to consider. The more you can put down up-front, the less you will have to borrow and the less you will pay in interest charges. If you have been saving for a home purchase for awhile now, then you will have no problem making a downpayment. In addition, often times you can be gifted the downpayment from a relative. However, if that's the case, be sure to read our blog about receiving a downpayment gift.

5. Am I Prepared to Pay Closing Costs?

The downpayment is not the only up-front cost you need to consider. You need to make sure you have enough cash to cover the closing costs. It is suggested that home buyers have approximately four percent of a home's purchase price set aside to cover these fees. Make sure that you have enough cash set aside for the closing costs and that paying these fees will not deplete your savings and/or emergency funds. If you do not think you have enough cash to cover these fees, talk to your Lake of the Ozarks mortgage lender about your options for lower closing costs or wrapping some of the costs up into the mortgage.

Finding a reputable mortgage company at the Lake of the Ozarks is the first step in a successful home buying process. Give us a call at 573-746-7211 to discuss your Lake of the Ozarks home financing options. As your local lakelender, I'll work with you every step of the way and back it up with the personal service you deserve! 

For Lake area news, resources and tips on financial services, please 

Michael Lasson
Senior Loan Officer
NMLS #: 493712

4655 B Osage Beach Parkway
Osage Beach, MO 65065

Direct:  (573) 746-7211


**The postings on this site are my own and do not necessarily represent First State Bank of St Charles’s positions, strategies, or opinions.

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