Eight Elite Tips for Homebuyers

March 11, 2018

Written by Tom Floyd, Vice President Real Estate Lending

Couple watching basketball game on the sofa at home.

March is synonymous with buzzer-beating three pointers and the joy of seeing a local college or university going to the NCAA tournament.

March is also an ideal time to reevaluate your current mortgage or to take the first steps toward homeownership with a new mortgage. Good thing Member One Federal Credit Union has a skilled local real estate lending team that is prepared to help you get a slam-dunk mortgage with these eight tips for homebuyers!

If you're wondering how the entire process of buying a home works, read our Complete Guide to Homebuying on a Budget. This invaluable resource offers everything you need to know about buying a home, from setting your budget to move-in day.

  1. Get prequalified before you shop! Knowing your budget before you begin looking at properties is crucial to ensure you’re using your time valuably and providing your real estate agent with the proper amount of information to find you the ideal home.
  2. Speaking of Realtors, always use a professional real estate agent to assist you in finding a home. Calling the name that appears on a sign in front of the property you’re interested in means you’re reaching out to the person representing the seller.
  3. Do not take out any new debts or cosign for anyone prior to applying or during the process. Additionally, avoid having your credit pulled after prequalification.
  4. Pay down credit card balances as much as possible before applying for a loan. This may result in a higher credit score and a better mortgage interest rate.
  5. If you have cash savings you intend to use as a down payment, deposit those funds into a bank account right away. Cash is not a source used for down payments, and having your deposit in an account for at least two months prior to applying is ideal.
  6. Talk to your loan officer prior to making any major life decisions that may alter your financial outlook, such as taking a new job or quitting your current one.
  7. Consider all down payment options. Member One has programs that allow for 100 percent financing and programs that have sellers paying all closing costs. In some cases, no deposit may be needed when buying a home.
  8. Finally, remember that you don’t have to be a member at Member One to apply for a mortgage. Many real estate professionals and nonmembers in our region assume otherwise, but the application process is open to anyone. Once pre-qualification is complete, membership eligibility is required to obtain the mortgage.

There you have it! Eight elite tips straight from your local mortgage experts. The ball is now in your court, but remember that you have a team ready to back you up and get the win. Talk to our team of mortgage originators, the authors of this list. These experts will help you understand your options, assess your needs, and advise you on which mortgage is best for you.