Tired of renting? Do you have a long-held dream to own your own home? Do you want more for yourself and your family? Now might be the time for you to make the plunge into homeownership, but are you ready?
Owning a home is a major financial investment and it involves ongoing repairs and maintenance costs as well as your own time and effort to put into the regular upkeep. It is also a huge financial commitment, especially in the beginning when you have to factor in down payments and closing costs. If you are considering buying a house and feel like you are ready to make the plunge, ask yourself the following 5 questions.
1. What Is Your Credit Rating?
Having a good credit rating is paramount to obtaining a loan – especially a home purchase. Having a strong credit score will make it that much easier to qualify for a home and will allow you to get a lower interest rate and save money. If your credit score is less than ideal (lower than 650), it will make buying a home more difficult and more expensive.
If you have poor credit, you might want to seek the assistance of a subprime mortgage broker. They have the training and experience in helping those who have damaged credit obtain a loan. They are experts at handling complex applications and have access to multiple lenders who provide loans for borrowers with unique situations.
2. Do You Have The Time Needed To Maintain The Property?
Homeownership is one of the most rewarding aspects of life. It is your sanctuary and is the base for many happy memories. It is also one of the best ways to build wealth both now and for generations to come. However, a home is also a lot of work and requires regular maintenance in order to keep it in good working order. You don’t need to be particularly handy or a serious DIYer, but you will need to be prepared to cut the grass, change the furnace filters, clean regularly, shovel the snow, etc.
In order to save money and be a responsible homeowner, you will need to devote at least 2-3 hours a week towards general household upkeep, repairs, and maintenance. If you aren’t interested in doing the work needed to keep the house in good working order, you might want to ensure you have the means to hire a specialist to assist with some of the tasks ie. cleaning, lawn cutting, etc.
3. Do You Have A Regular Income Stream?
Having the means to pay your mortgage every month is one of the most important factors in not only securing your home but remaining in your home. Before committing to purchasing a property, make sure you have a reliable income you can count on to pay the mortgage and all the other monthly bills tied to running the home ie. electricity and gas bills, the water bill, home insurance, etc.
It is very important to lenders to ensure that you have a secure full-time job or regular payments from a contract position. If you are unable to make a mortgage payment due to a job change or loss of a job, a lender can begin the foreclosure process after only a few missed payments, so be sure you have a reliable source of income to ensure a smooth process.
4. What Do You Want From Your Home?
You should plan to stay in your home for a number of years, so you should have a good idea of what you want to use your home for. Will it meet your needs and the needs of your family? Is it in a location that has easy access to schools, transportation and the activities you enjoy? Is the neighbourhood you are considering living in have all the amenities you need to access and furthermore, will it have the features you feel are important ie. sizable backyard, space for a home office, finished basement for an in-law suite or as a rental space.
These are all important factors you need to have determined before you even begin the house hunting process. Not having a clear idea of your wants and needs can lead to a decisive mistake that will be difficult and costly to rectify if you decide to move elsewhere.
5. Do You Have Adequate Savings For An Emergency?
Every homeowner is faced with an emergency home situation at some point in their life. A cracked foundation, leaky roof, or a plumbing issue usually requires emergency funds to remedy the situation. Having access to a rainy-day fund is crucial to making sure you can address the problem in a timely manner.
It might also be helpful to consider protection plans that cover repair and maintenance costs for major items like the furnace, air conditioner, or other major appliances so that you know you are covered for the repair work when it is needed.
Are You Ready to Buy a Home?
While many financial institutions may offer mortgages in Ontario, finding a lender that fits your personality and your financial needs is easier said than done. That is unless you have a mortgage brokerage specializing in precisely that.
Burke Financial is an experienced mortgage broker that will help you get the best interest rate for your situation. We access our vast network of private lenders, MICs, banks, and investors to find the right match. We invest our time and resources with as much care as you’ve put into researching your home purchase.
If you feel that you are ready to make a home purchase a reality, contact us today to explore your options. We have experience guiding many people through a first-time purchase or even the purchase of a second property. Whatever stage you are in the home buying process, we can help you every step of the way.
At Burke Financial, we have agents across the province of Ontario who have experience in helping people find their dream home in the neighbourhood they love. Let us help you achieve your dream of homeownership today. We’re always happy to answer questions to help you better understand the process. Apply now to get in touch with one of our mortgage broker specialists.