1. The only upfront cost is the down payment.
Buyers need to be prepared for several expenses – everything from fees, taxes, costs for inspections, credit reports, insurance, and others. Closing costs can be anywhere from 3 percent to 6 percent of the purchase price. Those costs can fluctuate greatly depending on the state you live in too.
2. Just looking for a house casually is not a big deal.
Some people may want to just start looking at homes to get a feel for the area, before they even sit down with a REALTOR®. But they could be setting themselves up for major heartbreak. “A buyer might be viewing homes that are in a higher or lower price range than what they are qualified for,” Connie Antoniou, a broker associate in Barrington, Ill., told realtor.com®. Home shoppers – even at the earliest stages – should get pre-approved for a mortgage so they know their budget from the get-go and don’t waste time looking at homes that are out of their price range.
3. You must have a 20 percent down payment.
A 20 percent down payment will help a buyer avoid paying private mortgage insurance. But 20 percent down isn’t required. Many lenders will still qualify a buyer for home loans with 10 percent or 5 percent down. Some buyers can even qualify for only 3.5 percent down with a Federal Housing Administration loan. There are many options for down payment assistance that lenders can explore with a buyer who has a limited amount to put down.
4. Schools shouldn’t matter if you don’t have kids.
“The neighborhood you choose matters – both now and later when you might consider selling,” notes the realtor.com® article. “Even if you don’t have children, good schools are a sign of a good neighborhood.” Buyers should explore all factors with their REALTOR® on items that could influence their homes appreciation and desirability so they don’t run into trouble later on one day when they try to sell.
5. You don’t need a home inspection.
When the housing market is extremely competitive, some home shoppers may be willing to waive the home inspection in order to get the home they want. “But beware: sellers are banking on your skipping this crucial step,” the realtor.com® article notes. “It means you’ll get the home as is, including any and all problems that come with it. And sometimes those problems aren’t exactly visible.”
Source: “9 Home-Buying Myths You Need to Stop Believing Immediately,” realtor.com® (Sept. 6, 2016)