How well do you really know the home buying journey?
We have the pleasure of working with buyers from Huntersville, Cornelius, Lake Norman, and all across North Carolina—and we’ve noticed that there is a bit of misinformation circulating about how the process really works.
In the interest of clearing things up, we’ve put together a quick list of common home buying misconceptions, along with our take on the real story.
Myth #1: The process starts when you begin shopping around for houses.
To be honest, we recommend you take another step first: Even before you start looking at specific properties, get pre-approved for a mortgage. The mortgage process can take some time, and the last thing you want is to fall in love with a home only to find out that you can’t afford it, or that the loan process is going to take too long for you to close. Get pre-approved and then start looking.
Myth #2: You always want to get a 30-year mortgage term.
Not necessarily. A 15-year term may mean you have higher monthly payments, but you’ll pay less total money in the course of your loan, and you’ll have it paid off in half the time! It’s always smart to weigh all the options rather than jump to an assumption.
Myth #3: You’ll need to have a down payment of at least 20 percent.
This isn’t necessarily the case. While a larger down payment will always result in better interest rates and lower monthly payments, there are a number of loan products that will allow you to get a home without a big initial payment.
Myth #4: The down payment is the only significant up-front cost.
Not true! You’ll also need to pay closing costs, which include fees for the attorneys, title agents, etc. who are involved with the closing. The total amount here usually comes out to somewhere between three and six percent of the house’s sale price. You can sometimes negotiate for the seller to pay part of these fees, but not always.
Myth #5: You can get by without a home inspection.
We urge all buyers to invest in a home inspection to really know what they are getting into, and to identify issues that need to be repaired before the sale closes. Even if you’re buying a brand new construction, there are always going to be issues, and an inspector will help you see them.
Myth #6: The property’s asking price is set in stone.
There is almost always some room to negotiate the price, but it is important to make smart, strategic offers instead of super-lowball ones. This is where working with a skilled agent is so important.
Indeed, we believe that our expertise can help you navigate these and many other common misconceptions about home buying. To start the search for your North Carolina home, connect with the Minges Cline team at your next convenience.