Ten Tips For Buyers

  1. HIRE a REALTOR - Having an agent at your side to help with the search process, advocate for you, protect your interests and navigate the complexities of getting to closing can save you lots of time, effort, energy, stress and money.
  2. CHOOSE a mortgage program - There are many more options besides the traditional 15 and 30-year fixed rate mortgages.  A Lending Manager such as Susan Trimmer with Towne Mortgage of The Carolinas will help guide you through the options and loan options from beginning your loan application to obtaining your loan.
  3. LOOK for information - Research the home-buying process online and gather information about the areas you are considering.  A great place to get a feel for the different areas in the Triangle is my AREA VIDEOS page.
  4. SAVE for down payment and closing costs.  - Strive to save as much as you can.  Generally, the greater your down payment, the more favorable your terms.  Even mortgage programs that feature little or no money down, such as VA & USDA loans, will still require closing costs and pre-paids.
  5. DISCOVER how much you can afford.  - Make sure you are saving enough toward retirement and other goals when deciding how much to spend each month on your mortgage.  By going through the process of being pre-approved you will have an idea of the price range you should be looking in.
  6. REMEMBER the other costs of home ownership.  - Remember to plan for homeowner's insurance, property taxes, private mortgage insurance (if applicable), utilities, repairs and maintenance.  For example, sometimes a newer, more energy efficient home that costs a little more than the slightly less expensive older home that has high heating or cooling costs will cost you less out of pocket each month.
  7. RESEARCH neighborhoods  - Prioritize what you are looking for in a neighborhood, then talk to the people who live in those you are interested in
  8. LISTEN to your REALTOR  - Part of a REALTOR's job is to know how much properties are worth.  A well-chosen REALTOR will do their best to help you negotiate the "home of your dreams" that is a win-win for both sides.
  9. INSPECT the house  - Hire a full-time, professional house inspector.  Again, your agent is a good place to start and likely has a few that have trust and confidence in.
  10. PREPARE for the closing.  - Closing costs can run in the thousands of dollars and you will want to have enough money to pay for them without exhausting all of your reserves.  Your Lending Manager can help you understand your options and help you through the process.











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