The decision to purchase a home is probably among the biggest decisions you will ever make in your lifetime, so to give you a good starting point, I have outlined the basics that you need to know before you start to look for your dream home:
- Get your credit in order: You may think you are ready to buy your first home in Atlanta, but you know what your credit score is? Do you know what types of loan are available to you? A credit score will determine the interest rate your will be paying on your mortgage. A minimal score of 620 is required to purchase a home with an FHA loan program. Most lenders prefer higher scores before making you a loan. To improve your credit score, get a credit report from any of the 3 credit bureaus an make sure your report is clean, if you see any unpaid debt or credit discrepancies, call and make arrangements to either pay It off or if it is a mistake, ask the credit bureau to remove it. This will increase your credit score substantially. A credit score of 681+ is ideal to get a mortgage loan with a low interest rate.
- Income: Employment is one of the essentials to qualify to purchase a home. Your employment has to be continues for at least one year or more, if you have change employment in the last year, your current job has to be similar to the prior job to count as employment on the sale career. To consider all your income, make sure you have all pay stub checks, W-2 forms from all your employers including any bonus you have received.
If you have any other source of income such as dividends and interest income from your savings accounts, provide the most recent statements so this will be included on your income.
- Save for Down payment: In order to purchase your home, you have to come up with some money for down payment. The minimal down payment you will need is 3.5% of the sales price if you are buying a home with an FHA insured loan. For conventional mortgage loans, you will need at least 5% for down payment.
- Pay your taxes: In order to qualify for a loan, most lenders will verify that you have paid your federal taxes for the last two years, if you haven’t done so, the lender will not give you a loan if your taxes are not paid.
These are the four more essential requirements to purchase a home in the Atlanta area. If you meet these four basic requirements, you can move to the next step in the home buying process.
The next step in the home buying process is to speak with a loan officer to get a loan pre-qualified letter. At this point, the Lender will ask for documentation such as:
- Bank Statements for the last 90 days
- Pay check stubs for the last 30 days
- Copy of your tax returns for the last 2 years
- W-2 form for the last year if you are an employee
- W-9 form is you are self employed
- Complete a loan application
- Employment verification form
Different lenders may ask for more documents, but the list above should get you started to get approved for a mortgage loan in Atlanta.
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